Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Keeping It Local

It's mid August and the local farms are over flowing with fresh native produce. You walk through the stand and the colors just jump at you. We have been enjoying native veggies for some time now and I'd like to share a couple of my favorites with you.

Tomatoes are a staple in our house but it's only a short time that we can enjoy local native varieties. Here are plum tomatoes...the one on the right is a San Marzano plum and the one on the left a staple plum. The San Marzano is a sweeter tomato and has a meatier flesh and less water. Both are great but I prefer the San Marzano especially when it's fresh.


Chop up a San Marzano, take a slice of hot capicola and diced it a bit. Ham can be used in place of the capicola. Then I take 2 eggs which I get from my daughter who raises chickens, and scramble them along with the tomatoes and capicola and fry it up.


You can add cheese, herbs, peppers or almost anything else you like.


This next dish is as simple as can be, but so delicious. Take some plum tomatoes and place them in a pot. Cover them with cold water place on stove and bring them to a boil. Turn off heat and in a few minutes the skins will split. Drain tomatoes and let them sit until cool. With your fingers peel them, this is easy the skins will come right off. Place tomatoes on a cutting board and roughly dice. On the stove place a pan and add some olive oil, enough to cover bottom. Slice a clove or two of garlic, I get this locally to it's creamy and nicely flavored but no after taste. Put garlic in pan and gently cook until soft. Add tomatoes and some whole fresh basil and cook gently for about 20 minutes. Add salt and pepper and serve over your favorite pasta, I like spaghetti or acini de pepe. The sauce is also great served over chicken or pork.










22 comments:

  1. Ha! My mouth literally started to water while I was reading this post. Loves me some fresh REAL tomatoes.

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    1. William Shuck
      Thanks
      Bill the farm I trade with has the best...good cows make for fine tomatoes.

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  2. Alan, We are cropping the tomatoes every day and every other day Sue makes sauce for the freezer. She makes a dish with either beef tomatoes or plum where they are quartered and garlic butter on top and then baked in the oven. When they come out add Greek basil and serve on toasted sourdough with bacon, black pudding and scrambled egg or whatever takes your fancy. I think we'll have to have a sunset ceremony when the last tomato is picked. Enjoy. Best wishes, John

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    1. The Two Terriers
      Thanks
      John nothing like your own "packed at the peak" tomatoes. Come winter what dishes they will produce.
      A fitting tribute to the seasons end.
      Roasted garlic on quality baked bread...next on the menu.

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  3. Wow - that, well, both things make my mouth water. "The Simple Things" could be the "new" name of your blog Alan... YUM!

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    1. Hibernation
      Thanks
      Will it's the blogs sub-title.
      I was up in the Berkshires today and I could not believe the amount of water in those streams.

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  4. Beautiful dishes my friend.... Buying and eating local produce is the best, a win-win for everyone. I really like your cooking style.... right on.

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    1. Doug Korn
      Thanks
      Doug it's a style I refer to as simplistic....Jeanette claims I do it because I don't want to do more than I have to....I think she may something.

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  5. Alan
    Anything with tomatoes added is a great dish for me. They are loaded with lycopene which aids in keeping the body healthy. Delicious looking dishes thanks for sharing

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    1. Bil Trussell
      Thanks
      Bill I can use all the good stuff nature can deliver.
      I hope to be roaming the woods for a long time.

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  6. Now I am hungry, and I got no maters!

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    1. Ralph Long
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      It's almost supper time buddy.

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  7. Hi Alan
    Today we had a delivery of fresh fruit and veggies delivered by my father - he is retired now and maintains two allotments.
    This time of year he often pops round with a couple of bags of all kinds of goodies. Today we had a couple of pounds each of stanley plums, pink fir apple potatoes, heritage carrots in purple and deep orange, yellow corgettes, orange beetroot, and baby plum tomatoes.
    Tonight my wife made a gorgeous American style plum crumble and tomorrow she will be roasting down the tomatoes to make a rich sauce for pasta - if there are any leftovers I may use them as a sauce for a hot patas bravas with the pink firs.
    As a bonus he also left us with a large fresh lobster he bought from a local fisherman at the coast near to where we live. It was one of five he bought for £15 (about $19) fresh off the boat.
    Enjoy this seasons bounty!
    Alistair

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    1. Anonymous
      Thanks
      Bags of goodies I'll say. Alistair purple carrots that sounds interesting. I've had purple potatoes but have not seen carrots with such color. Lobster is one of lifes finest offerings...enjoy.

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  8. Such a great time of year for local produce, Alan, including my garden. Like you, Bev and I are making the most of it. Love those two dishes you posted and will cook both of them. Nothing like the smell of garlic and onions in a frying pan.
    Regards, Sam

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    1. Parachute Adams
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      Sam I know you'l enjoy both dishes. Garlic and onions together, those smells say this is home...throw in some peppers and sausage wow......

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  9. Gabbagool! Those eggs look amazing.

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    1. Michael Agneta
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      Mike it's breakfast time, what say you...

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  10. I wasn't a great lover of cooked tomatoes until quite late in my innings. I think it stemmed from my mother frying them until they were a tarty mush that I couldn't eat.Now I quite like them, but usually just raw or on top of a home made pizza or "potza", a sort of pizza we make with a prebaked scalloped potato base.
    Do you get a variety of tomato called "Beefsteak" in the US? We sometimes get them from organic markets. They are huge and full of flavour. A slice of one does look like a beefsteak, hence their name.
    Nine more sleeps to Victorian trout opening. The local creeks are looking fine.
    Kindest Regards,
    Steve.

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    1. Steve Hynes
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      Steve your pizza crust of scalloped potatoes sounds great. We have beefsteak tomatoes here. I primarily use them on sandwiches "love the BLT"...like kids again waiting for opening day. Good luck.

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  11. you are a great chef haa ..! You have many and varied menus, I like that. a hug

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    1. Armando Milosevic
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      Armando I'm not close to being a chef, but I am a damn good cook. And I might add a lousy dishwasher just ask my wife.

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