And the vegetables we always think about for backyard grilling are just starting to make a showing. My favorite for this week is the first of the big heirloom tomatoes. We have just a few Black Krim and Cherokee Purple to get your tastebuds in a summer mood. If you haven’t tried the ‘black’ tomatoes yet, you’re in for a treat. They have a deep, full flavor with a hint (or more) of sweetness. What they lack in greenhouse-perfect presentation, they more than make up for in flavor. In my opinion, the absolute best fresh salsa tomato ever.
Add to that, the first of the summer sweet corn. Yes, it’s non-gmo, heirloom, fully organic – picked Friday evening and cooled immediately for Saturday morning. Like the tomatoes, there are only a few this week. After all, it’s only the first week of summer.
We have the first of the hard (winter) squashes – butternut, delicata, acorn, buttercup and a couple of beautiful, giant pink banana squash. Winter squashes, of course, grow when the weather is warm – and are just as good baked, roasted or grilled now as they will be in September. The difference is that unlike the softer ‘summer’ squash, they generally cure (just save them at room temperature for a couple of weeks) to a tougher skin and then will keep for 3 – 6 months (depending on the type.) They make delicious summer soups and ‘pumpkin’ pies, too.
We still have the new fingerling potatoes, as well as the standby yukon gold and red potatoes – dug on Friday just for market. Texas sweet and red onions, green and purple royalty snap beans, burgundy okra, lemon cucumers, summer squashes – lemon, tondo scuro, crookneck and patty pan. And the kale and arugula are still hanging in there for us.
You just have to love the pickings in a summer garden! See you in the morning!