Summer and tomatoes.
Sun-ripened tomatoes, freshly picked from the garden…
Is there anything better?
Can there be too much of a good thing?
Sometimes, it does seem so, especially when they all ripen at once.
It happens every year.
I plant the plants, then I wait and wait.
The cherry tomatoes are always first.
I have three plants; three different types.
At first, there are just enough for a small salad every other day.
Then every day.
Then I start cooking with them.
Then, one day I come back from the garden and I have baskets full of cherry tomatoes sitting on the counter.
Once again, they have conquered the garden.
In the past I have peeled and oven-dried them – lots of work.
I have cooked them, put them through a food mill and frozen the pulp – lots of work.
I have simply thrown them on the compost pile – no work but lots of guilt.
This year I’m doing it the easy way – freezing them whole.
I tried a few test tomatoes.
I put a few in a food bag, froze them and thawed them.
After they thawed, the skins slipped right off and they were ready to use.
Nice, skinned cherry tomatoes, ready to toss into stir-fries and stews next winter….
When I’m missing my garden.
Now the big tomatoes are going crazy as well.
I could just take a fork and go live in the garden…
Do you like taco salads?
I do – except for all the high fat bits. I like my salads to be healthy, flavorful, and on the light side.
I also like lots of flavor…
8oz (250gr) ground beef (mince)
1/3 cup quick-cooking brown rice
2/3 cup beef stock
1 cup cherry tomatoes, cut in half
1 small red onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 small cooked red beetroot, julienned
1/4 cup black, Greek olives, cut in half
1/4 cup green olives, cut in half
3oz (90gr) feta cheese, cut into small cubes
2 tbs fresh oregano
2 tsp olive oil
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp paprika
greens: spinach, lamb’s lettuce – enough for 2 main meal salads
2 tbs ketchup
2 tbs Balsamic vinegar
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
3 tbs salad olive oil
Cook brown rice according to package directions.
Heat oil in nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add chili powder, paprika and sauté briefly (30 seconds). Add onion and sauté for 5 minutes. Add garlic, beef and continue cooking until meat is done.
In a large salad bowl, whisk together all ingredients for vinaigrette. Add the greens, beetroot and oregano and toss to combine.
To finish: Divide the salad and arrange on two plates. Spread rice in the center of lettuce. Top with beef, olives, feta and tomatoes.
I’m linking this to Kelly the Kitchen Kop’s Real Food Wednesday blog carnival…. Sounds like fun!