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Savoring A Classic Summer Flavor

September 2, 2014

It’s been a busy summer here on the farm. Mild weather has meant many visitors from nearby and faraway places. It’s meant taking a break from posting things on the blog, but as days get shorter, there is hope that we can reconnect. I have some more fun recipes to share for use with this season’s bounty. After mild days in July, the 93 degree days we’ve had in August have truly made it feel like summer. One of the best things about summer is the fresh produce from the garden.

This time of year there are many things coming out of the garden. Here in Iowa we are enjoying fresh potatoes, kohlrabi, tomatoes, and more. My favorite way to eat a tomato is sun-kissed, straight off the vine. But growing tomatoes sometimes presents a problem. What do you do with all of them? There are only so many tomatoes you can eat fresh, and there always seems to be more. Of course people in 1900 (and still today) would can some of those tomatoes, turning them into sauces and catsups. They also found creative ways to prepare the tomatoes for the table. So, if you are looking for a new way to enjoy this season’s bounty, try Mrs. Curtis’s Baked Tomatoes recipe from 1909.

Baked Tomatoes

Wipe 6 smooth, medium-sized tomatoes and remove a thin slice from the stem of each. Take out the seeds and pulp and drain off most of the liquid. Add to the pulp an equal quantity of buttered cracker crumbs, and season with salt, pepper, and a few drops of onion juice. Refill the tomatoes with the mixture, place in a buttered pan, sprinkle with buttered cracker crumbs, and bake twenty minutes in a hot oven. – Page 154

 

Of course if you are feeling extra ambitious or adventuresome, you could try the Tomato Surprise Recipe:

Tomato Surprise

6 tomatoes

2 hard-boiled eggs

2 tablespoonfuls red pepper

2 tablespoonfuls green pepper

1 shallot

1 clove garlic

4 anchovies

 

Wipe the tomatoes, cut a slice from the stem end of each, scoop out the inside, invert, and stand thirty minutes. Add the eggs, peppers, shallot, garlic, and anchovies finely chopped. Moisten with mayonnaise dressing. Fill the tomato cases with the mixture, mask with mayonnaise, and garnish with anchovies. Serve as a first course at dinner. – Page 153-154

 

We sometimes do the Baked Tomatoes more as a casserole, with the bread crumbs on top, similar to the Corn and Tomato Casserole I wrote about here. It is great addition to any meal enjoying the bounty of the season, and will hold well as a casserole if you are taking it to a potluck.

I’ve never made the Tomato Surprise, I am slightly put off by the anchovies, but if you choose to make it, let me know how it turns out.

So even though you may have so many tomatoes you are searching for more recipes to use them up, savor the bounty of these warm days. Before we know it, the seasons will change and those fresh juicy tomatoes will be gone again. Until next year.

—Erin

 

 

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