Sunday, August 01, 2010

Cracked tomatoes

When blight reared its ugly head in my garden before tomatoes had even set on this year, I was positive I wouldn't be canning any tomatoes; I figured we'd be lucky if we just got some tomatoes for the table before the plants totally died.  
We were at Aldi's a couple of weeks ago and I bought quite a few cans of tomatoes, since theirs are noticeably cheaper than the ones at Walmart; Aldi doesn't have any salt-free ones, but I hoped to make up for all that salt in other ways.  
And then one day I had enough tomatoes from my garden for six quarts.  You bet your life I was going to get all of those canned as soon as I possibly could.  I had eight quarts left over from last year, then those six, plus my Aldi's tomatoes.  Things were looking up.  
The next day I came up with enough tomatoes for nine pints.  I figured when I'm making chili or spaghetti, I can use a can of the store-bought and a pint of my own salt-free ones.  
As I write this entry, there are more in the canner.  

These tomatoes aren't pretty; they're almost all cracked, and rotten spots have to be trimmed away.  They're big, though, and the flavor is wonderful.  One of my favorite ways to eat fresh tomatoes is to cut them up and put Ranch dressing over them.   

I usually wake up sometime after 5 A.M.  I start my coffee and while it's making, I go straight outside, because morning is the best time of day; I'm always afraid I'll miss something if I don't get out there.  This is the sight that greeted me when I looked eastward today.  I told God, "This is the best little vacation spot You've ever given me."  
The older I get, the more I feel that "this world is not my home, I'm just a-passing through".  
It is, however, a delightful world, out here behind the barn.  

Even my very pregnant cow thinks so; she spends every night in front of my house, up against the back of the barn.  Last night the gate was shut so she couldn't get in the little lot, and she bawled until I opened up the gate for her.  
She's alone again; Cliff's brother's heifer who was supposed to be getting weaned here figured out how to sneak up behind Bonnie and steal milk; we happened to catch her yesterday.  Bonnie butted her away really hard, but then went to grazing, and the little thief just got behind her and started in on the two back teats.    We're sure she wasn't doing this all along, it's just something she figured out lately.  Of course we can't have her nursing a cow that's soon going to have a new baby, so we took her home.


Lindie said...

My favorite way to eat tomatoes this time of the year is with an English muffin. Sliced with butter, a little garlic salt, a slice of tomato, then mozzarella and pepper and under the broiler. And of course BLTs!

small farm girl said...

I love the mornings too. Nothing better than watching the world wake up.

I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

Glad you got enough to can. The taste just can't be beat and I know you'll be enjoying those tomatoes come cold weather. I love to wake up early and enjoy the day too.

The Guy Who Writes This said...

Cracking is caused by too much water.

Donna said...

Yep, I know that Guy; all the record rainfall we've had has accelerated the blight problem, too. Still, I'm going to be able to can plenty of tomatoes for another year; that makes me happy. I'm easy to please.

Astaryth said...

My favorite way to eat a -fresh- tomato... (one home grow and not from the store) is to just cut it up, put a little salt on it and eat it :) I do the Ranch dressing thing with my store bought tomatoes though!

Anonymous said...

I love that old song. I used to sing it at my Grandma's church in the country. Karen

Cliff said...

I like a little Italian dressing on mine as a change up to a little salt.
It looks like we'll get some tomatoes out here after all. That is if the grey leaf spot doesn't take everthing.

Lori said...

I'm glad you got enough tomatoes to do some canning. Love that early-morning picture!