Aren’t you glad you grew this?
Cherry tomatoes are the first to ripen in the garden. When the full size tomatoes, start to ripen, the little cherries and pears continue to prolifically produce all summer until first frost.
Suddenly you have more tomatoes than you can eat. Time to get out the dehydrator. Halved cherries make great “sun-dried” tomatoes. The sweet, dried essence of these fruits is a gourmet garden bonus.
Dinner tonight is a Mediterranean style pasta dish made with homegrown sun-dried tomatoes, and colorful bell peppers.
It’s cold outside. My abandoned garden patch looks stark and lonely out there in the single digit weather.
Inside the warm kitchen, I’m cooking up some of the fruits of my labor. Thank heavens I dried the overabundance of cherry tomatoes. They are a gourmet treat too expensive for my budget.
You can grow that! And now is the time. Order seeds for tomato plants. The sun-dried cherry tomatoes make every dish richer, even canned tomato soup.
I ordered Tricolor Cherry Tomatoes, Garden Candy and Heirloom Mini Tomatoes Red & Yellow Pear from Renee’s Garden
In my zone 6b garden in southeast Missouri, I’ll start tomato and pepper seed in mid March. Start seed 6 to 8 weeks before planting out doors. I start tomatoes under grow lights, Grandmother started seeds in a Dixie cup on the window sill.
To find your plant hardiness zone, simply type in a ZIP Code at the USDA Plant Hardiness web page.
Mini tomatoes are the first to ripen. They will be your first homegrown tomato this summer. As the full size tomatoes come on, begin dehydrating the cherries and pears.
Tonight’s dinner will have tomatoes and peppers from last summer’s garden.
Recipe: Mediterranean Pasta Salad
Main: cooked pasta (2 ounces dry pasta per person)
Add sun-dried tomatoes, bell pepper, mixed olives. (1 cup of each vegetable)
Dress with Lemon juice and olive oil, you favorite salad dressing, or balsamic vinegar.
Garnish with a handful of fresh, chopped herbs and a tablespoon or two of toasted nuts or seeds.
Make it your own – Add meats and cheeses, if you like. Anything you would find on an antipasto plate, could be added. Salami, mini mozzarella cheese balls, canned tuna, giardiniera.