The Daily Southerner, Tarboro, NC

Food

May 23, 2012

Use Your Summer Tomatoes

TARBORO — One of the most wonderful things about summer is fresh tomatoes. I could eat them three times a day. The tomatoes that we find in the market during the winter just aren’t the same. They don’t taste like they are even in the same family. Of course that’s because they are picked green and shipped all over the country. However, during the glorious days of summer, we can find fresh, ripe locally grown tomatoes almost anywhere. Do you have tomatoes yet? We don't and I can hardly wait! Our plants look great but alas, no tomatoes yet.

Tomatoes are also very good for us. They are high in anti-oxidants and lycopene and an average tomato only has 35 calories. So, enjoy the bounty of summer tomatoes and improve your health at the same time.

Here are a few recipes to help you use up those wonderful members of the fruit family that we consider vegetables!

The first recipe is simple yet delicious. It also uses ingredients you probably have in your cupboard. For the topping, use crushed saltine crackers or breadcrumbs, depending on preference and availability. You can also add any other spices that you like with tomatoes.

The second recipe is a great to spread on Wheat Thins for an appetizer or use as a dip. It can also be used as a sandwich spread for cucumber sandwiches. Again, it uses products that are commonly kept in the cupboard.

Recipe number three uses red, yellow and green tomatoes. That is partially for the beautiful color variations, although each of those tomatoes will taste a little different. If you only have red tomatoes, try the salsa anyway. It’s worth it. You can always add orange or yellow bell pepper for color and a different taste. When I make tomato salsa, I don’t like it hot, so I leave out the Jalapeño and substitute basil for the cilantro.  

The last recipe is Tomato Gravy. It isn’t gravy like milk gravy, but it has cream and so can be considered a gravy or a sauce. This recipe also uses ingredients in your kitchen with the possible exception of the whipping cream.

Try these easy, quick summer tomato recipes for a great way to use up those tomatoes. If you have other great summer veggie recipes, please Facebook them to me or give me a call and I’ll write them down.

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