The amazing beauty, flavor and freshness of this luscious fruit is truly a highlight of late summer. Chewy, crusty bread, the awesome tomato, fragrant, tender, freshly picked basil, a sprinkle of kosher salt and you have a memorable, summertime treat that you can only dream about in the dreary winter months. At the office yesterday, many of us enjoyed home grown tomatoes, thickly sliced and served up on buttered, mayonnaised, toasted, country Italian bread. Topped with kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper and a few basil leaves, we happily finished off a couple of loaves of bread, a variety of tomatoes, an abundance of freshly picked basil, a few hunks of fresh Asiago and some aged Grana Padano. It was a fun and lingering snack time that could only be held at this time of the year. Thank you to brother, Joe, for contributing so much goodness from your healthy and productive organic garden. We enjoyed your cucumbers and tomatoes! We eagerly await each year's crop and appreciate each and every bean, zucchini and tomato. And, thanks, also, to Ray's Quality Greenhouse in Steger, IL where I purchased my awesome tomato plants this year. Heirloom tomatoes like "Rainbow Striped" and "Lynn's Mahogany Garnet" are beautiful and delectable tomatoes. The "Brandywine" is also an amazing, sweet, pinkish, weighty and flavorful tomato. It matures s l o w l y. I'm trying to do the same. In the large closeup above, the smaller red tomatoes with metallic olive green stripes are "Lynn's Mahogany Garnets", the large golden tomatoes pictured front center and right are the "Rainbow Striped". The big beefy tomato in the background is a "Brandywine". I just picked those this morning and set them on the patio step for their photo shoot. The "Rainbow Striped" is probably my favorite. A large, beautiful golden yellow tomato with a sweet, mild flavor and few seeds. Smooth skin with a pinkish red bottom and a round swirl of the pinky red in each mouth-watering slice. Amazing tomato. I wouldn't think of cooking with any of these because their pure flavor must be enjoyed "au naturale" at the peak of ripeness......
Simple food, pure and true flavors. Enjoy all that summer has to offer as we wind it up for 2009. September is a wonderful month to savor what the earth is still gifting. Enjoy it all . . . Et surtout, faites simple! . . . And above all, keep it simple!
Wishing you love and life's simple pleasures,