June 21, 2012

Easy Caprese

Green tomatoes, red tomatoes, jalapenos, and banana peppers—all picked this week!
 Yesterday I made it sound like our garden was kaput, and some of you might have thought, "Wow, she's in a bit of a funk."

So to those of you who may have stopped by for the first time after seeing my Zucchini Enchilada recipe over on Whole Foods' blog, I want to say welcome to the Sustainable Diet Kitchen and Garden! Please stick around—there's plenty of cookin' and growin' going on.

This morning, I picked about a pound of perfectly ripe tomatoes (Romas, Black Cherry, and one lovely Purple Cherokee), almost two pounds of peppers, and one muskmelon. Full disclosure, I've been Googling, "When to harvest cantaloupe" for about a week now, trying to figure out when to pick the durned thing. Fingers crossed I made the right decision.

Black cherry tomatoes ripened on the vine. They have more of a purple tint in real (non-Instagram) life.

And oh, the tomatoes. We have so many! It's wonderful! This weekend's plans involve canning a couple of jars of Romas from our one plant. Last weekend, I watched my 8-year-old niece snack on cherry tomatoes and found myself thinking how awesome it was that she'd just sit there and plop them in her mouth, no Ranch dressing required. Ah, the little things in life.

We aren't growing any lettuce right now—it's way too hot for leafy greens in our yard, though my mom has been able to keep some growing well in the shade—but that doesn't mean we're salad-less.

Easy Caprese salad and some zucchini-arugula tortilla pizzas for a quick weeknight meal.
A quick Caprese salad is a great way to use some of our fresh tomatoes and basil. It's fantastic, even without mozarella on hand. A little shaved parmesan, a spritz of lemon, some ground pepper and sea salt, and voila! A garden-fresh salad.

For my next trick.... might I suggest a Caprese tortilla pizza. Maybe we can just call it a tortilla margherita pizza? Not to be confused with the other kind of tortillas and margaritas... Just a tortilla, topped with diced tomatoes, julienned basil, a little bit of cheese (I'm going to try goat cheese for a new kick), drizzled with olive oil and baked at 450 until the cheese is melted and the mini pizza crust is nice and crisp. I do believe I just came up with our dinner plans.