Every year I grow a tomato plant and about this time, late summer, it produces way more than I can handle. At the farmers market, tomatoes are cheaper than ever as are complimentary ingredients like peppers, cilantro, basil, etc. Which always leaves me left with heaping bowls of tomatoes and until this year I was never sure what to do with them.
The cultural and family expertise of handling real food is many generations removed in my family. My remaining grandparent only has a few tips and only around Atlantic fish (he’s from Newfoundland in Canada). This means I’ve had to play around with various tomato recipes while researching what others do. Now, a few years later, I am leading a renaissance of real food in my family and ready to share those tips with you. Hopefully, this will inspire you to get in the kitchen or visit your farmers market for a few pounds of tomatoes!
I’ve found four delicious ways to handle the tomato overload. They are marinara/meat sauce with pasta, pico de gallo, insalata caprese, and plain old can-freezing. The first three can be a full meal with all the extra ingredients, while the last insures a prolonged tomato enjoyment throughout the winter.
Well, remember the cliche: “I’m on a diet so please give me a Diet Coke instead of a Coke.”
I think that fits as an analogy here.
Just saying you’re eating a salad doesn’t mean you are eating well. One could skip the hamburger for the salad then load it up with dressing and fried chicken. A report from ABC’s Good Morning America, points out that in many cases the salad is equally fatty or worse.
They point out that iceberg lettuce, which accounts for much of the salad, has “zero nutrients and zero fiber.”
Which is where I draw the line.
The story is all wrong. Yes, iceberg lettuce can be at zero, but so can everything else we eat. Let’s not take an entire crop and label it as useless.
Instead we should understand the nature of food. First and foremost, quality is the most important aspect of food and not all are created equal. Or, put another way, vegetables that are grown from quality seeds and harvested when ripe are densely filled with nutrients.
But, if you buy vegetables from a supermarket or fast food chain, you are not getting this. Instead, you are purchasing the cheapest food money can buy. Which means they are harvested before they are ripe and grown from the cheapest seeds.
There’s more. A growing number of items, like tomatoes and strawberries, have been modified to produce extra sugars. Added together you have produce practically empty of nutrients but with extra sugar.
Even if you choose the best supermarkets have to offer, you skip the dressing, choose a lean meat, and all that…then the best you can do is “the cheapest food money can buy.”
A lot like choosing the Diet Coke.
If you’re new to this, here a good way to think about it.
Take the typical supermarket salad and cut it in half. That should be your portion size when eating high quality food. It should make you feel full and it should be delicious.
The reason for this is the dense amount of nutrients in the food which also makes it taste much better. Decrease the amount of nutrients and you will increase the amount you eat. It’s as simple as that.
Now, how long do you think it will take for 2/3 of America to understand this?