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Friday, July 30, 2010

Tomatoes and Fall Garden Thoughts

It's that time of year where the tomatoes are coming in faster than I can pick them. That's a good thing but I wonder sometimes if I'm in over my head trying to find ways to use all these tomatoes. I planted over 20 tomato plants this year which may have been too many but I couldn't resist. There are so many interesting varieties out there that sound so delicious in the seed catalogs that limiting myself to twenty something tomato plants was excruciatingly difficult!


I'm trying to stay ahead of the tomato picking but unless I'm out in the garden on a daily basis some of the ripe ones go to waste. I'm making more tomato sauce this year than I have in the past. My goal is to have enough to feed our family weekly throughout the winter. Spaghetti is a main course we have frequently during the dormant season so the more 'maters the merrier! Most of the tomatoes I've harvested have been made into a plain sauce then frozen. I even made an orange tomato sauce out of some smaller orange tomatoes. We'll see how that tastes this week! In the next few days I'll start canning what I "can" so that we can retain some freezer space for other things. Hopefully the beans will start coming along and we can save them in the freezer.

Very soon it will be time to think about fall gardening. Even though the heat of summer is still beating us mercilessly over the head fall gardens have to be started early in order for the vegetables to mature before the frosts. I've noticed that the box stores are still carrying their seed displays which I haven't seen before. Maybe with all the interest in vegetable gardening over the last couple years they've finally realized that people can garden past October. In fact depending on what you are trying to grow you can be harvesting fresh food from the garden in December and January. It all depends on the weather and what you chose to grow. Next week I'll post on fall vegetable gardening - it's definitely time to start thinking about it! (You can check out my fall vegetable garden layout from last year until then!)

What is your favorite dish made with fresh home grown tomatoes?

8 comments :

  1. Dave, my tomatoes are just suspended in time, lots of green, no red. I have only picked two tomatoes and two cucumbers. I wonder if the heat has just gotten to them?

    Eileen

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  2. That is one heck of a lot of tomatoes! You'll be busy putting them all up!

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  3. Dave,

    Well, that takes me back! I used to plant dozens of tomatoes, then spend a month canning sauce. Sometimes it lasted into the next tomatoe season! But that was when I only had a few children... Seems the more I needed the sauce, the less time I had! Enjoy your produce, Jeannette

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  4. I love canned tomatoes in soups and chilis during the winter. I'm thinking of canning some salsa this year with the bounty of my boyfriend's garden :)
    Looking forward to the fall gardening post.

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  5. Wow, that is a lot of 'maters'. They sure will taste good this winter.

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  6. Yum, Yum tomato sauce galore!

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  7. Dave, I wish I had your problem! Our cool summer doesn't spoil us with tomatoes. Last year, when we had plenty of them, I cut and froze bags of tomatoes. During winter, I cooked them with onions and eggs.

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  8. I've been making lots of homemade sauce (my mom's special recipe) this year. My tomatoes were doing great until that past heat wave with temps over 105, but hopefully they'll bounce back. :)

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