It’s time once again for Harvest Monday, where we celebrate all things harvest related. It is safe to say the tomatoes are really rolling in now. I’ve harvested 50 pounds of them already this year, and the vines are still loaded with ripening fruit. Other harvests now include plenty of eggplant, plus a few of the early maturing the winter squashes. It looks like it is going to be a good year for tomatoes here, in contrast to last year when they had a lot of issues and the yields were way down. I use a lot for processing so it is fairly easy to make them disappear!
Benevento is a new red beefsteak tomato from Artisan Seeds that has yellow stripes and keeps well both on and off the vines. It’s my first time growing it, and so far it has been productive.
My wife and I do a lot of tomato tasting when we have them. They also appear often on sandwiches and as a side dish. One day we compared Chef’s Choice Red and Damsel. While there were subtle differences in flavor, we liked them both and couldn’t really pick one over the other. Both do well here for me, and Damsel has the bonus of being resistant to late blight. Blight isn’t yet an issue for me, but I fear it will be someday so it is good to have resistant varieties at the ready.
Tropical Sunset is another new tomato I’m growing for the first time. The ping pong ball sized fruits are sweet and tasty, and so far splitting has not been a problem with them. I have eaten quite a few right out in the garden, which is always a sign of a good tasting variety. It is visually pretty too, so to paraphrase Bill Murray in Caddyshack, it’s got that going for it too!
Last week I roasted one of the Goldilocks acorn squash in a cast iron skillet, and it was tasty prepared that way. This 2021 AAS Winner has been very productive for me, and I look forward to eating more of them this year and to growing it again next year.
With all the tomatoes coming in now, it was time to start processing them. Ketchup making is an annual event here, and since it takes around five hours from start to finish my wife and I both work on it together. For this batch, about nine pounds of paste type tomatoes made 8 half pint jars of finished ketchup. We plan on making another batch this week, which should keep us supplied for a year or so. I also used about eight pounds of the paste tomatoes to make a batch of Freezer Tomato Sauce. This is a seasoned sauce, with added onion, celery and garlic. I plan to make unseasoned sauce with more of the tomatoes as soon as we have them, and if I have enough tomatoes I want to make tomato paste too.
Harvest Monday is a day to show off your harvests, how you are saving your harvest, or how you are using your harvest. If you have a harvest you want to share, add your name and blog link to Mr Linky below. And be sure and check out what everyone is harvesting!