By now, I’m sure you all have some lovely ripe tomatoes in your gardens, especially if you followed this tips posted here back in the spring. If you are overwhelmed with tomatoes and looking for ideas of what to do with them, here are a few suggestions.
Canning – Canning preserves your fresh tomatoes so that you can enjoy them all year long. There are many options for how to can your tomatoes, including whole, crushed, or as spaghetti sauce or salsa! Because it doesn’t require any fancy equipment, this is the perfect choice for a bumper crop of tomatoes.
Freezing – You can freeze tomatoes in just about any way you can imagine, either cooked or raw. Similar to canning, freezing preserves fresh tomatoes for future use; however, the tomatoes will not last as long a canned ones. Freezing is an excellent option when you don’t have enough tomatoes to justify canning, but too many to use before they go bad.
Cooking – This is by far the tastiest option for fresh tomatoes because it involves eating them right away! There are so many yummy ways to eat tomatoes, including tomato sandwiches, fresh salsas, and much more. This recipe for redneck caviar comes recommended by Nanci, one of our gardening experts:
2 (15 7/8 ounce) cans black-eyed peas, drained
2 (10 ounce) cans corn, drained
1 (15 7/8 ounce) can black olives, chopped
1 green pepper, diced
1 red pepper, diced
1 (15 7/8 ounce) can black beans, drained
1 larger purple onion, diced
6 ripe tomatoes, diced
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder (optional, only if you want a bit of a kick to it)
1 teaspoon parsley flakes
16 ounces house or zesty Italian dressing
Combine all the ingredients and refrigerate for several hours. Serve with tortilla chips.