Monday, September 8, 2008

You say tomato, I say bummer

Here is one of life's big unanswered questions, along with how Leonard Pennario was able to play 40 different concertos a year, and why Sarah Palin gave her kids the names she did.

What is with the tomato this year?

Saturday, as usual, I got my bag of veggies from the farm. And there were three tomatoes in the bag. One was completely green. Another was a kind of greenish yellow. A third was red, but it was hard like a baseball.

The rest of the bag was no great shakes either, I have to say. One tiny yellow squash, one tiny zucchini. Two cantaloupes that the newsletter warned us about, saying in effect that they were use-them-or-lose-them, and that some disease had shown up that had taken care of the rest of the melons, so we'd better not expect any more.

Four leeks, that was the major score. (Howard jumped right on that one. "I'm going to take a leek," he said. AHAHAHAHAHA!)

But back to the tomato situation. The newsletter went on and on about how the farm is shipping onions to Whole Foods, how one of the farm girls just graduated from Cornell, and then there was the bad news about the cantaloupe crop. There is always bad news in this newsletter. That is what organic farming is all about. You share the luck, good or bad.

Which is well and good, but what about the tomatoes?

How can they not write about that?

At the Clinton-Bailey Market the tomatoes are not only lackluster, they're expensive. Even the cherry tomatoes and grape tomatoes, generally your fallback, are not that great this year.

Major bummer! Allow me to kvetch. It just feels so good. Ahem. We wait all year for a windfall of tomatoes, we suffer starting in May from cooking magazines that seem to assume we have them already, we anticipate September, and this is what we get? And then the nerve -- the nerve! -- of this newsletter, giving me a recipe for tomato salad. Corkscrew and Tomato Salad.

With these tomatoes?

On what planet?

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