A frost warning sent me out to my community garden plot yesterday to gather all the green tomatoes that were never going to get ripe.
I picked a heavy bagful of tomatoes, a few from my Butter Bush, a lot from the Rutgers, plus four more huge tomatoes from a volunteer tomato plant in my home garden. It was so many, it felt like more than all the ripe red tomatoes I’ve picked put together.
Because of all the rain, it’s been about a week since I visited my community garden plot. I was startled by all the changes.
I haven’t cooked a proper meal in more than a week! No wonder I’ve been feeling cranky. We’re still hitting up the farmers markets, though, so it was high time to cook up the inventory on hand. I pulled out everything that looked good, and by the time I had it all lined up, I knew what I was going to do: saute enough summer vegetables to call it ratatouille, and cook up some brown rice with mushrooms.
You might be enchanted by something you’ve never seen before, like these darling egg-shaped, green-striped eggplants. She told me they were Brazilian eggplants, which appears to also be called jiló. But the pictures that I find show a solid green. These are striped, like Thai eggplant. They’re almost as pretty as these.
So what do I do with them? Shall I fry them up with onions? Roast them on the grill? Hmm. Can’t wait to find out.
Posted in cooking
Warm, sunny days mean ripening fruits. Today I picked my first BIG tomato, a Ramapo tomato that I bought at Mahoney’s this year. Supposedly it’s the original “New Jersey” tomato. It’s an heirloom in the sense that it’s an old variety, but not an heirloom in the sense of seeds gardeners can save. Since it’s a hybrid, you need a big operation, like Rutgers university to breed them. The plant is growing healthily, but not making much fruit. Once I get over admiring the color, I’ll do the taste test.
Dead eggplant, live Nicotiana
Light frost is coming over night lately, just enough to finish off the eggplants, which haven’t been looking too hot in the first place.The flowering tobacco at its feet is holding up, for no good reason.
Flowers still standing
I had no idea it was so hardy. There it is, still flowering with the sweet alyssum, next to snapdragons holding up hope for one late hurrah of blossom. Don’t laugh. The snapdragons are pretty tough. It would be pretty silly if they flowered now, though. The bees are gone to sleep.
Eggplants resting before they face the grill
Why, yes, that photo is totally posed. I’m easily amused, by such small things as laying purple eggplants next to pink flowering tobacco, so the nightshades can congratulate each other on escaping the evil Late Blight of ’09. And (hastily crossing fingers) the tomatoes are still doing well, thank goodness.
Posted in garden
It’s hot. It’s sticky. It’s hot.
That’s what I’ll be thinking when I finally get to cook this eggplant.
Posted in garden
Bumblebee on a mission to raspberries
Never mind the late lamented peaches. More flowers are coming, promising more fruits. The raspberries are still going steadily, and the eggplants are just beginning to flower. Since raspberries have thorns and raw eggplant is bitter, I just might get to eat some of these.
Tomato still flowering hopefully
If you need a little optimism in your life, grow tomatoes. (Besides, we might all be growing victory gardens next year.) They will keep flowering no matter what, until the first hard frost. Look at this! It’s after Columbus Day, and it’s still hoping. Too bad. I pinched the flower off so the plant will finishing ripening all those fruits. That’s what a sheltered spot will do for you.