On Tomatoes – Finally
I’ve been waiting for them not- so-patiently. It’s probably been the hardest year in the garden since we moved here – at least when comparing input to output. It’s been a rough year weather- wise, following several years of rough-weather.
This year we had no spring; summer and drought arrived in April; we broiled in July which tormented us with several days over 100F (38 C). The tomatoes did not like it – especially considering that they were planted a little late – but sustained with copious watering, they shouldered through. Now we are harvesting for real.
A lot of things are not doing so well. The early summer squash plantings have vanquished under the onslaught of the squash bugs; the beans produced for a couple of weeks before being turned into lace by the Mexican bean beetles (the lima beans went straight into lace, no crop); it’s been too hot for dill and for peppers to set flowers (let alone fruit); and … the blister beetles have bee devouring the Swiss chard. I have never had any problem growing Swiss chard before and blister beetles are a painful experience that I confronted this year for the first time.
On the bright side, we continue to have a reasonable harvest from the asparagus beans (a crop new to me); the summer cabbage has been doing well (2 more heads to harvest); the basil is exploding; the butternut squash looks good; the peppers have lots of flowers (and with cooler temperature should set fruit … cross fingers…); the ground cherries are prolific. I have hopes for the late planting of summer squash… the cucumbers are swelling… and the much awaiting tomatoes are finally ripening.
And so it is time to preserve tomatoes. Time for canning, saucing, pasting, drying (especially cherry tomatoes!), oven preserving (delicious on sandwiches and Tomato Tatin) and… can you guess?… sorbeting! At last, we can have some fun
Picture below is Yellow Tomato Sorbet (I used heirloom Valencia, meaty and sweet). Surprisingly creamy and… really yummy.