JerzeeTomato


What we ate last weekend
September 15, 2009, 7:00 am
Filed under: Garden, Kitchen, Tomatoes | Tags: ,

So, while this blog has devolved into a few really lame posts about tomatoes over the course of this  summer I keep thinking about our other aspect, that is, food.  While toiling over the grill this summer, I more than once though “I should share this dish with my loyal readers (well, both of them)”  But , I’ve often been reluctant since better than half of what we cook every weekend is whatever ideas Mark Bittman had.  So it always seemed somewhat derivative to just fluff  somebody else’s blog which is why I have resisted.  But for god’s sake, the recipes usually work.  As published.

But then I figured what the hell, I’m not doing anything else.  And besides, since the tomato season has ended a bit early (thank you cool and rainy summer) there’s not much else to write about so here goes with our initial “WWALW”

Firs off, I should point out that due to the crazy schedule I work, I rarely get the chance to do much cooking during the week.  Between driving to football practice, picking up at aftercare and whatever activities the Principessa has going on it’s usually a miracle if anything home cooked gets put on the table that’s not leftovers.  So the weekend is when we let hair down. So to speak.

This past weekend we kicked off with (‘natch) a Bittman recipefor mussels and pasta.  Whenever  Bittman posts something involving seafood be it in Bitten or The Minimalist (or both) there’s a good chance we’re going to cook it on Friday night.  Not that we’re religious fanatics or anything, it just works out that way.  Anyway, killer recipe, will do again.

Saturday was an Indian feast,  Jerzeetomato style.  Steve Raichlen’s “Tandoori Style Beer Can Chicken” but instead of beer we used some wine from the packing crate in the fridge.  The Principessa made raita, some wonderful cauliflower and a pilaf from Julie Sahni’s “Classic Indian Cooking” and we also did some chapatis on the grill from (you guessed it) Bittman.  Lots of work for this meal and lots of clean up, which prompted the Principessa to refer to it as “Fricking Indian Thanksgiving”

Sunday, keeping it simple since it was the kickoff for the NFL season and we wanted to spend quality time with the flat screen, we grilled bison steaks we got at the Montclair farmer’s market and made a version of  “Ass the Potatoes” from Mom’s first book. (someday we’ll share the  story of how that dish was named, but for now, buy the book)  Potatoes were fingerlings from the “organic guy” at the farmer’s market.

And one more Bittman on Monday.  We managed to crank out the Pork Skewers with Peanut Basil Sauce and had them with some leftover pilaf.  Good stuff and we realized that the peanut basil marinade/sauce would be good on just about any kind of skewer.  Or just eaten from the bowl with a spoon for that matter.



A Fungus Among Us
August 3, 2009, 1:53 am
Filed under: Garden, Tomatoes | Tags: ,

Some of you have asked if we’ve had any problems with the fungus that is affecting tomato growers up and down the east coast.  Well, it’s good news/bad news….While we haven’t had any evidence of the Late Blight that is grabbing the headlines, we’ve been battling our usual problem with Early Blight that always affects us during particularly wet summers.

Excuse me, I need to go fire up the sprayer.  Again.



First Supper
July 30, 2009, 6:14 am
Filed under: Garden, Kitchen, Tomatoes | Tags: ,

On Tuesday this week we had our first meal from our own tomatoes.   A simple pasta sauce made from about 10 Super Marzanos, a little onion, a little garlic, a little olive oil and a HUGE handful of basil.  Spectacular.  The meal used up all of our ripe tomatoes (except the cherries, we’re swimming in those) but we’re going to be able to eat the first slicers this weekend.  We’ll keep you posted.



Will it ever end?
July 2, 2009, 3:46 pm
Filed under: Garden, Tomatoes | Tags:

Rain, Rain…..you know the rest.  All this rain has seriously dampened even my motivation to write.  The second wettest June on record.  And it’s not doing the garden any good at this point.  We’re hoping for a better conditions on the 4th.

Some good news, though, we picked our first tomatoes this week.  As usual, they were a couple of Sweet 100’s.  But when I picked ’em I realized I hadn’t even posted this years line-up.  So, here it is:

Sweet 100’s

Chocolate Cherry

Gold Nugget (also a cherry)

Ramapo

Moreton

Costoluto Genovese

Cherokee Purple

Pineapple

Old German

Purple Russian

Brandywine

Old Italtian Plum

Super Marzano

 

For a total 25 plants.  At least initially.  We’ve already lost one of the Sweet 100’s.  It turned yellow from the base up in just over a week.  Weird.



duh!
May 21, 2009, 7:09 am
Filed under: Garden, Tomatoes | Tags: ,

I should have figured this out before.  The hundreds of seedlings that were coming up from the compost I added to the garden are TOMATOES!.  After my mother-in-law, M, pointed out that they couldn’t be carrots since carrots seed from the greens on their tops,  I let some of them get a little bigger.   Turns out every time I cored and seeded a tomato last summer and added to the composter, I was reseeding my ‘maters.



Back to the Earth
May 12, 2009, 6:04 pm
Filed under: Garden, Tomatoes | Tags: ,

So the dumb-asses folks at Gardener’s Supply couldn’t come through with the goods and plans for the new raised bed have been changed.  Back in the depths of winter we decided to build raised bed #3.  Since the Big Pine was taken down last year the very back of the yard gets a lot more light.  We figured we’d get another bed in back there to take the usual overabundance of seedlings that we usually don’t have room for. 

I called up to Burlington, VT, the home of GS to inquire about the status of the Raised Bed Corners I had ordered back on 4/29.  Originally back-ordered to 5/11, the date on the site had changed to 5/28.  Sure enough, when I called they confirmed the later date and went on with something like “oh, yeah, those are made here in Vermont and we can’t get them out any faster”.  To which I wanted to say “Well call over to Mason/Jay-Sun/LotDog at the metal press and tell him to put down the bong and put in some overtime, ‘cuz Phish tour hasn’t started yet”.

I wanted to say that.  But instead I just said “I’ve got tomatoes to plant, that won’t work. Please cancel my order”

So I’ll be tilling a hole in the ground and just planting in the dirt we’ve got.  Just like they did it in the old days.



Recovery
April 22, 2009, 7:09 am
Filed under: Garden, Tomatoes | Tags: ,

We’re still nursing our aching selves back to fighting form but we got a lot accomplished last weekend.  All of the tomato and herb seedlings under the lights got repotted into larger containers.  We planted all the stuff I bought last Friday.  And The Principessa and The Principessa-Mum weeded, mulched and edged the front yard.  With new edging no less!  It looks spiffy!

With highs this weekend forecast in the 80’s we’re trying to not overload ourselves for next weekend.



Well, Ok then….
April 15, 2009, 12:44 am
Filed under: Garden, Tomatoes | Tags: ,

It seems the voice crying in the wilderness (namely, me) for some bi-partisanship for tomatoes has been heard.  Probably no thanks to yours truly, love apples will adorn the WH veg garden.  They’ll have to enjoy their tomatoes since they won’t be eating any of those berries this year.



WHAT?! NO TOMATOES?!
March 20, 2009, 1:07 am
Filed under: Garden, Tomatoes

3015655286_a2dcbbffefWhile this is not normally any sort of political forum,  even the world of vegetable gardening is not immune to politics.   Today,  First Lady Michelle Obama will break ground on the first vegetable garden at the White House since Eleanor Roosevelt’s Victory Garden.  But as this blueprint indicates, there will be no tomatoes.  The First Lady says “A real delicious heirloom tomato is one of the sweetest things that you’ll ever eat…  and my children know the difference”   So why not grow some, eh?

 

 

 So much for re-election.  Forget the AIG mis-calculation, Jerzeetomato.com will not be endorsing the 2012 Obama ticket until this wrong is righted.  If then.

And there’s too much lettuce in the plan, too.

Seriously, though, we admire the commitment to local produce and healthier eating.  We just feel that commitment should include tomatoes.



Awesome Weekend
January 22, 2009, 11:58 am
Filed under: Garden, Kitchen, Tomatoes | Tags: , , ,

img_0049It’s cold out there! But we warmed up with a winter feast made from the best stuff we had stashed away in the basement with two meals featuring entrees made from out stash of  Awesome Farm products.  First, Lisa made gnocchi which we had with a lamb ragu (which also featured a couple of jars of our own tomatoes).  It went down quite well with a capital Barolo.   For dessert, I made my (sorta) famous Chocolate Malted Creme Brulee.  Famous, ‘cuz it was in Mom’s cookbook The Splendid Spoonful.

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  On Sunday we had had Hainanese chicken with our Awesome Farm chicken.  This dish has been in heavy rotation for us every since Bittman wrote about it last summer.  Although we like the more traditional version with a zippy lime-chili sauce.