|9/27/2012 9:53:00 AM|
Before the frost puts an end to reaping
“To everything there is a season. A time for sowing, a time for reaping...” and we have sowed and the time of reaping is about to end. We have had a very productive garden this year. The tomato plants were huge and loaded with their fruit. We planted 12 plants and after picking tomatoes from them, I had a bushel of the red juicy fruit. That was in one picking...kid you not. Three days later it was more than a half bushel and four days later it was another bushel. And as I write today (the 19th) I just came back from our “victory garden” (many of you will know what that is) having picked almost another bushel. Why do I need to “put up” so many tomatoes when there are just two of us? All of our children and their families live less than 30 minutes from us and I get great pleasure in sharing veggies from the garden. Life is good! I know I wrote a column the end of August using tomatoes in the recipes but here goes again, before the frost puts a hold on reaping. I’ve been asked to repeat this recipe by a number of people and so...
BLT PASTA SALAD
1/2 of a 1 lb. pkg. of bow tie pasta, cooked according to pkg. directions until just tender.
2 T. olive oil
1/2 lb. bacon, cut into 1” pieces
1/2 c. regular or light mayonnaise
1 T. white wine vinegar or cider vinegar
3/4 t. coarsely ground pepper
1/2 c. grated Parmesan cheese, divided
4 c. grape or cherry tomatoes cut lengthwise
1 c. diced red onion
2 c. coarsely chopped Romaine lettuce Drain pasta; transfer to a large serving bowl. Toss pasta with olive oil and set aside to cool completely. In a large skillet, over medium heat, fry bacon pieces until crisp. Drain on paper towel. In a small mixing bowl, combine next 4 ingredients, using half the Parmesan. Add to bowl with pasta; toss to coat well. Just before serving, add bacon, tomatoes, onions and lettuce. Fold together gently. Sprinkle additional Parmesan over top if you wish. Makes 8-10 servings.
This tomato side dish is one of my favorites to serve with a hot dish or burgers
CRISPY BREADED TOMATOES
4-5 small, firm tomatoes, cored, sliced in 1/2” slices
1/4 c. butter, melted or olive oil
1 large egg, well beaten
1 c. crushed saltine crackers
1 t. grated Parmesan cheese In a large skillet, melt butter (I use a combination of butter and olive oil). Put egg and cracker crumbs into shallow, separate dishes. Dip tomato slices into egg, on both sides, then into cracker crumbs on both sides. Put into hot butter (don’t let it get too hot), fry tomatoes on both sides until golden brown and still firm. Yummy. Serves four. Note: You can substitute green tomatoes but fry them until just tender.
This open face sandwich goes great with a bowl of soup.
1 English muffin, split
1/4 c. shredded cheddar cheese Couple dashes of cayenne pepper
2 large tomato slices
1 T. shredded Parmesan cheese
On each muffin half, sprinkle half of cheddar cheese and a dash of cayenne. Top with a tomato slice and Parmesan cheese. Broil 6” from the heat for 4-5 minutes or until cheese is bubbly. Makes 2 open face sandwiches.
BEEF AND VEGGIE CASSEROLE
1 lb. lean ground beef
1 medium onion, diced
3 medium potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
3 medium carrots, thinly sliced in rounds
3 celery ribs, thinly sliced
2 c. frozen, cut green beans 1 t. dried thyme leaves
1/2 t. each, salt and pepper
4 medium tomatoes, peeled, and seeded and chopped
1 c. shredded cheddar cheese
In a skillet, combine ground beef and onions. Cook, stirring until beef is no longer pink; set aside. In a 3 qt. casserole dish, layer half of the potatoes, carrots, celery and green beans. Spread half of the beef and onions over veggies. Sprinkle with 1/2 t. each of thyme and salt and pepper. Repeat layers. Top with tomatoes. Cover and bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes. Lower heat to 350 degrees for about 40 minutes or till veggies are tender. Remove from oven; sprinkle with cheese, cover and let stand until cheese is melted. Makes six-eight servings.
Thought for the Day:
Autumn is a season followed immediately by looking forward to spring!