Some Stuff N' Stuff

Mostly a garden blog, and the occasional garden-inspired recipe.


Up to my eyeballs in tomatoes

Part of the harvest

Well, I guess I asked for it. After years of "not getting enough" tomatoes, I planted a few Romas and Early Girls and viola - I have way too many damn tomatoes... and I love it. Last week I picked over 50 tomatoes, not including cherries. This week I must have picked at least 50, plus 2 pints of cherries.

Two-toned, two-lobed freak

I slaved away in the kitchen tonight making chilled tomato and red pepper soup, fresh garden salsa and a pasta salad with cherry tomatoes. I have tons more to freeze or do something with before I head up to Maine for the week. The pic above is the leftover tomatoes I haven't cooked yet, not including the ones in the freezer.

I also had a modest harvest of 3 small squash and a couple large handfuls of green beans (the second coming). There are still purple flowers on the beans, and the basil flowers are still attracting tons of bumble and honey bees. There are a few onions left in the ground, and the cucumbers are pretty much done. Time to plant some new lettuce and another crop of green onions.


Chilled Tomato and Red Pepper Soup

Ripe summer tomatoes are perfect just as they are. Simply chop them up, mix with jarred peppers and a few other ingredients, and you've got dinner. For a vegetarian supper, round out the meal with an assortment of cheeses and crackers. Craving something a little more substantial? A platter of smoked salmon, relishes, and breadsticks would be great with the soup. For dessert, offer figs drizzled with honey

• 2 1/4 cups tomato juice
• 1 1/3 cups finely chopped tomatoes (about 2-3 tomatoes)
• 1/2 cup (generous) finely chopped roasted red bell peppers from jar
• 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
• 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
• 1 tablespoon prepared white horseradish
• 1 garlic clove, pressed
• Generous dash of hot pepper sauce
• Fine sea salt
• 4 1/3-inch-thick rounds soft fresh goat cheese
• 6 grape tomatoes, cut in half
• 2 tablespoons thinly sliced fresh basil
• Additional extra-virgin olive oil (for drizzling)

• Combine first 8 ingredients in large bowl; whisk to blend. Season soup to taste with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Cover and refrigerate until well chilled and flavors blend, at least 2 hours. DO AHEAD: Can be made 6 hours ahead. Keep chilled.

• Ladle soup into 4 bowls. Top each with 1 goat cheese round.


Fresh Garden Salsa

• 10 tomatoes (plum), halved and seeded
• 1/2 medium red onion, minced to 1/2 cup
• 1 jalepeno pepper, minced
• 1-2 garlic cloves, minced
• 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
• 4 tbsp lime juice
• salt
• tortilla chips

- Chop tomotes into 1/4 inch pieces, transfer to bowl
- Add onion, chili, garlic, cilantro and lime
- Season with salt, mix to combine
- Let stand for 15 minutes


Tomato Pasta Salad

• 1 box farfalle pasta, cooked
• 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
• 1 jar of artichoke hearts, plus 1/3 cup of the liquid
• 1/2 cup kalamata olives, pitted and chopped
• 1/2 cup sliced basil
• 1 tsp red wine vinegar
• 1/2 block of feta cheese (fresh)
• 2 green onions, chopped
• s&p

- Combine all ingredients in large bowl and mix well together.