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Category Archives: tomatoes

>Summer surfeit

>The green button on the left side of the screen tempts me–“Tomato Club–click here to become a member.” There’s a tomato club? My cursor hovers briefly, my index finger twitches. “Over 600 varieties of heirloom tomato seeds” the large red print boasts. There’s that word. Heirloom. Every addict has a trigger–mine is the “H” word. I can’t help myself. I am a tomato junkie.

Must click on the “heirloom varieties” button. My lips move as I scroll through the list. The names alone are sheer summer poetry: Black Brandywine. Caspian Pink. Dixie Golden Giant. Dingwall Scotty. Giant Oxheart. My mouth has started to water and I’m only to the “G’s”. Halfmoon China. Mister Stripey. Polish Giant. Somebody stop me before I grab my credit card and do something stupid. Super Sioux. Tiny Tim. White Wonder. Zapotec Pleated. Have mercy.

Yesterday I harvested five deep red Early Girls and a lopsided lumpy Cherokee Purple that tasted as sweet as an August peach. Can you say “heaven”? I actually controlled myself this year and only put fifteen tomato plants in my small suburban backyard.

Go ahead and laugh. Within a week I’ll be reveling in homemade salsa and bruschetta pomodoro and gazpacho. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner will find me with my elbows on the table and tomatoes on my plate. Sliced on sourdough toast with sea salt and melted gouda. Nestled between fresh mozzarella and slivers of garden basil. Scattered in pasta with olive oil and capers. Bright red and golden wedges tossed with cucumbers and vinaigrette. Aaaaah! So much to eat, so little time. Excuse me, I’d better get started.

So, what’s your personal favorite way to eat vine-ripened tomatoes? Leave me a comment and I’ll try your suggestion. A “major award” to the contributor of the most delectable idea.