Saturday, September 15, 2012

The Season of BLTs

When you live in the country, you live by seasons. Not the four season, although that plays a part, but the seasons that describe daily life: sap season, mud season, planting season, football season, zucchini season, the rainy season. Up in the northeast it is currently tomato season. There are so many tomatoes that they are literally everywhere - the tables, the garden, the chicken coop (for those that didn't make it), in jars of sauce, salsa, our dinner plates. While I don't enjoy the canning of tomatoes - something about always burning myself either peeling them, cooking them down or canning them - I love to eat them fresh picked. This week marked the start of the end of tomato season. Now we pick as many as we can because the frost is coming and soon there will only be those that were put up for winter.

With so many tomatoes, it is important to find creative ways to eat them. We eat them in tacos, salads, on sandwiches, with eggs. About five times a week I make a Polish favorite where you cut up your tomato, mince a small piece of onion and add sour cream, salt and pepper. It is served immediately. My husband grew up eating it with half and half or heavy cream instead of sour cream, depending what was available. My son loves it. Really, who doesn't love anything coated in sour cream?

My favorite though is the BLTs. Although in my house I add organic Wisconsin Cheddar cheese to my toasted bun. I eat them for lunch when the kids are napping and then again for dinner when the air still smells of bacon. I use Hellman's Mayo (every time we have tried to make this homemade has been disastrous. Anyone want to come over and show me a thing or two?), salt, pepper, warm bacon, cheese,butter lettuce and a ripe pink brandywine tomato picked fresh while the bun was warming. To me there is nothing better. The warmth from the bun and bacon melt me inside and the juicy tomato cools me and quenches my thirst.

Soon the weather will turn cool and my tomato plants will die. I will miss the quick trips to the garden... Oh, would you look at that? The sun is shining and the breeze is warm. Please excuse me while I pop out to the garden and pick a tomato. All this talk has made me hungry.

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