It’s the second week in September, and the tomatoes are *just* hitting their stride. I’ve sliced a couple of Brandywines and fried them with our Sunday bacon and egg, and for the last two weeks we’ve been enjoying a small but steady supply of Gardener’s Delights and Tumbling Toms in salads. Today I made a tomato sauce to go with pork meatballs and linguine. I love this time of year.
After a mini heatwave over the last week or so, my tomatoes are still ripening outside. The Gardener’s Delights and Gardener’s Pearl are pretty much over, although there are still some green ones left. We’re just waiting for a consignment of pickling vinegar to arrive at our local greengrocer – when it does, my other half is going to get to work on some green tomato & apple chutney! He made some last year and it was delicious.
I am still picking semi-ripe (well, quarter-ripe) Brandywine tomatoes and putting them on the windowsill – there are about half a dozen of them still left on the vine outside our front window. When the weather breaks, they’re all coming inside to take their chances – if they ripen, all well and good; if they don’t, it’s chutney time for them too.
Speaking of Brandywine tomatoes, I notice that the seed company I bought them from isn’t doing them this year, so I’ve had a go at saving the seeds. I put them in a little dish of water for a few days and when the water had gone all scummy, I washed the seeds gently in a strainer to get rid of the pulp, then placed them to dry on a coffee filter paper. That’s where they’ll stay for another week, until I put them in a ziplock bag and store them in the fridge till next April. Fingers crossed that the seeds come up, ‘cos Brandywine is a delicious beef tomato that tastes fab in sandwiches, with fry-ups and (my favourite way of eating them) chopped up with mozarella cheese, basil and olives, and sprinkled with extra virgin olive oil, freshly ground pepper and a bit of salt. Nom nom nom…