Homegrown Tomatoes

One thing we plant every year in our garden is tomatoes. I used to can them but since I retired I can’t seem to find the time so we only plant enough to eat. I love cherry and pear tomatoes to snack on.

Do you see how the large tomato is starting to blush on the end? We picked the other red tomatoes when they looked the same way and they are almost fully ripe. Did you know that once they start to get the slightest color to them, they will not grow any larger? Ever notice how the bugs seem to be attracted to them when they are ripe red in the garden?

We don’t let our tomatoes ripen on the vine anymore, we pick them as soon as we see a little color change and bring them into the house. We lay our tomatoes on the counter and in a few days they are red ripe and ready to eat, without bug damage! If you grow your own tomatoes, give it a try.

http://www.InDianesKitchen.com

60 Comments »

  1. Being Italian I can appreciate all your work here. Nothing like home grown tomatoes. Mix them with some sweet onion, garlic, salt and pepper and some good olive oil. Dip some crusty Italian bread and enjoy. That is what God serves your first heavenly dinner.

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  2. It’s so wonderful how you grow what you need and you live from your garden. I did not know that about tomatoes – they stop growing after they start turning colour!

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  3. Love your variety of tomatoes!
    I did not know tomatoes will not grow larger once they’ve started to get a colour … that’s really interesting! Yes, it’s strange how busy you get when you retire, hey 😅.

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  4. I will give it a try! Thanks for the tip!

    And yes being retired… life is busier!
    My motto is… I wake up with nothing to do and go to bed with only half of it done. 🤣😂

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  5. When I used to grow tomatoes, I picked them before they were fully ripe, worried that bugs or critters would get to them before I did. My mom always let hers ripen on the vine, saying the skin wasn’t tough if you did that, and she believed they tasted better. When the vines started losing leaves when summer was full-on, she’d cover the ripening tomatoes in the garden with newspaper sheets clipped with clothespins to the stems, to keep them from blistering. I learned how to can tomato juice while still at home, and some years—if I can find a local supply—can a few dozen jars. Nothing as good as a homegrown tomato. Mmmmm…

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    • Fascinating! I miss canning and all the other things I use to can. Maybe someday, when the babysitting grandkids is done I can get back to it. My basement is full of canning supplies and cases of jars. You are so right, fresh homegrown tomatoes are the best. Especially with BLT’s and toasted cheese sandwiches.

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      • Oh my God, yes! And you can’t make a decent BLT with store-bought tomatoes. Another memory of my mother concerning tomatoes….she saved the fat from frying bacon to fry potatoes and such with, and when she ate sliced tomatoes, she drizzled them with melted bacon grease, and sprinkled them with salt and pepper. My 1st husband baked whole tomatoes. He sliced just enough off the bottom so they would sit in the baking pan, slice off the top, take out a little of the white core if there was any, then mound them with buttery cracker crumbs, sprinkle with basil and salt, then bake for about 20 minutes if I remember correctly. You had to eat them in a cereal bowl because the juice would literally squirt out when you cut into them. Heavenly! I hadn’t thought about them in years. I kept most of his recipes (he died many years ago). I’ll have to see if I can find it.

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      • OMG I have bacon grease in my refrigerator and use it often but NEVER thought of drizzling it over sliced tomatoes. Your mother was a genius! Lol I love stuffed tomatoes and today for a snack I stuffed cherry tomatoes. I will post it soon.

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    • We were nervous the first time we tried it so we only did the first six or so. However, they ripened pretty quickly so we never stopped. Now we even do our cherry tomatoes because they always seemed to split when we left them on the vine.

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  6. That is interesting Diane. Are those Heirloom Tomatoes at the top? We used to like those for BLTs. We only planted tomatoes once – my father years ago. They were left on the vine til bright red (as we were not savvy like you) and my father went out and found the squirrels pulled them off, took a bite, then discarded them. The birds also pecked them. 🙂

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    • They are called Big Boy tomatoes and I don’t believe they are heirloom Linda. The birds use to always peck ours too! The most irritating thing was the tomatoes would crack and then the bugs went in them and that grosses me out. I won’t even eat a cherry tomato if it splits.

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      • I was going by the “shoulders” of the tomato which made me ask, as I recall buying Heirloom like that in the past. The “Big Boy” tomatoes are certainly delicious looking Diane and it is BLT time. Yes, those cracked tomatoes with worms or bugs in them were not fun. My father was not successful at all with his garden.

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    • Thanks we love August just for the garden. I walked out there today and had a handful of blueberries, yellow pear and cherry tomatoes. I don’t know why they taste so good right off the vine when they are warm from the sun. Lol

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