The Baltimore native’s love for vegetables began on summer vacations to her grandparents’ tiny farmhouse deep in North Carolina tobacco country. On the linen-covered dinner table, collards typically shared space with just-picked corn, tomatoes, and the beans and peas she and her siblings had shelled and snapped that morning. Meat, other than as seasoning, was often absent, and rarely missed.Read more
A take on summer’s sunniest vegetable
Judith Winfrey is the co-owner of Love Is Love Farm at Gaia Gardens and the executive director of leadership and hospitality at Resurgens Hospitality Group, which includes Restaurant Eugene and Holeman and Finch Public House.Read more
It’s a known fact that you just can’t have too many tomatoes. And by “tomatoes,” I mean real tomatoes—the kind that ripen in the sunshine, spend no more than an hour or two in captivity, and, when sliced, display their jewel tones all the way through. The kind you can only get locally … because good tomatoes just don’t travel all that well. If they’re hardy enough to survive a refrigerated truck ride across the country at the bottom of a produce box, chances are pretty good they were never worth eating.Read more
When corn and tomatoes are at their peak and super fresh, you don’t really have to cook this side dish—you just warm up the ingredients a little. For full summer-veggie effect, I like to serve it with grilled eggplant slices and a green bean salad.Read more
“As more and more commercial salsa pours into the marketplace (heavy on pineapple and fire-roasted mangoes), there is something doubly pleasurable about just-diced onion and tomatoes carefully cut into bright squares,” writes David Tanis in “A Platter of Figs and Other Recipes.”Read more
The Attack of the Killer Tomato Festival returned to JCT Kitchen yesterday. The crowds were convivial, the heat was blazing, and the cocktails were cold. 5 Bone Rack, the all-chef band that includes Ford Fry, Zeb Stevenson, Ted Lahey, Jamie Adams, and Gary Mennie, turned out to be not that bad. (Who knew that Ford Fry could almost play the solo for “American Girl?”) Oh, and there were truckloads of ripe tomatoes in most every variation imaginable.Read more
A few friends and I dropped into One Eared Stag early in the evening last week for a few drinks and snacks. It was that casual kind of night where everyone agrees to order something slightly different (a salad, a meat, a finger snack, and so on) to share while ordering all too many cocktails. Right as we were taking our first sips, a bowl of Hammock Hallows heirloom tomatoes, bufala mozzarella, tomato water, radish, and edible flowers landed on the table and everyone’s jaws just about hit the floor.Read more
So long, strawberries. I’ll miss your sweet, tangy, tiny-by-supermarket-standards presence in my cereal, my yogurt, my dinner salads. Oh, yes, your big flavor and tender texture have ruined me forever for those berry-like items found in the grocery stores. I’ll pass, and I’ll be counting the days until you return next spring.
What to do in the meantime? Fortunately, there’s plenty coming in to area farmers markets to keep me distracted. Georgia’s generous growing season is just getting going, and there’s a whole summer ahead of good stuff to eat.
Here’s a look at what you’ll find now and in the weeks ahead:
Right here, right now: Early peaches. Summer squash. Beets, green beans, potatoes, arugula, collards.
Just starting to roll in: Blackberries, blueberries. Cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, pole beans.
Here but not for long: Sugar snaps, lettuce, spinach, radishes, carrots, broccoli, garlic scapes, kale, onions.
Still to come: Slicer tomatoes! Basil, corn, eggplant, freestone peaches, field peas, okra, peppers, raspberries, musk melons, watermelons.
And then, as the summer fades, we’ll have figs, muscadines, winter squash. Then sweet potatoes, apples, hardy greens, turnips … and the cycle starts over again. Strawberries will be back before we know it.
It’s the joy of eating locally and, by extension, seasonally. There’s always something good to look forward to. And when something you love is at its peak, you enjoy it all the more.Read more