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Archive for September 2nd, 2010

At Last! Tomatoes!

My tomatoes are finally beginning to ripen! They’re a motley crew. You’d never mistake them for supermarket tomatoes, mostly red, mostly round, mostly blemish free. No, these tomatoes come in shades of purple, brown, green, yellow and even red. They’re large and misshapen, small and globe-like and everything in between. They have scabs and cracking. But most of all, they’re delicious!

I started these tomatoes from a packet of mixed seeds labelled Rainbow Blend. The label reads: A sensational blend of assorted Heirloom tomatoes. Varieties such as Black, Pink, Red and Yellow Brandywine tomatoes. Add to the Brandywine tomatoes some Cherokee Purple, Green Zebra, White Wonder and a beautiful orange, like Nebraska Wedding and you have an Heirloom pack that can’t be beat! Well known for its size and rich flavour. Great for salads, canning, soups and sandwiches. Indeterminate variety.

The problem with a mixed package is that you can’t say for sure what variety any particular plant is. A few are easy to pick out, like the Green Zebras but others are just a guess. Still, it has been fun to see such an assortment. With a garden, it tends to be feast or famine. While waiting for the tomatoes to ripen, we were tomato-less. Now, just a week later, there is a veritable deluge of tomatoes waiting to be picked and eaten or stored.

The biggest difference I notice between these tomatoes and the tidy supermarket specimens is how juicy the homegrown fruits are. The supermarket ones are very firm, with only a small amount of liquid. These garden varieties, in contrast, are full of juice, more like the tomatoes I seem to remember from years ago. In any case, we have been enjoying tomatoes with every meal! Pictured below is a plateful prepared simply, just sliced and sprinkled with freshly chopped basil and crumbled feta. Mmm Mmm Good.

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