The moment has finally come after weeks of nursing and digging and weeding and propping and weeding some more… I have harvested a tomato! Of course, if I were any kind of decent blogger, I would have taken a picture of it hanging on the vine, and again after I sliced open it’s juicy goodness… but I guess I’m not very good at delaying gratification. I knew it was out there – I was making dinner – I picked and sliced and ate. Done.
When I was a little girl I visited my grandma and grandpa every summer. Grandma grew tomatoes, and every time we were at the table there was a plate of thick slices accompanying the meal. Initially, I sprinkled sugar on my slices, my young tastebuds thinking that food was only worth eating if coated with sucrose. I have since learned that the best way to eat them is sans sprinkles, and preferably warm, straight off the vine.
My second favorite way to eat tomatoes is canned. Grandma made canned tomatoes, and the Ball jars lined the shelf of the laundry room, along with the greenbeans. The sweet corn was stored in Tupperware containers in the chest freezer. When grandma went into an assisted care facility we had a yard sale and took some things to Salvation Army, but I kept the pot that she used to can tomatoes. I really thought I would use it. I had a hard time growing my own, but I could buy tomatoes at the farmer’s market and just can those. But I never did, so I sold the pot at a yard sale recently. Part of me was sad to see it go, but another part knew that if I haven’t canned tomatoes by now I probably never would.
Now that I have a decent crop I can rejoice as their skins start to gradually turn yellow, then orange, then red. And I can think of grandma as I eat my tomatoes. She would be proud. I just won’t tell her I sold the canning pot…