Green Tomatoes: Autumn Arrival
When the rains come and the air chills, it’s time to pick all the tomatoes: those few remaining red ones and all the green ones that never made it to full ripening. Summer’s behind us now; autumn is stepping forward.
A favorite October task for me is deciding how to use those green tomatoes. After picking, I separate the red from the green, setting aside the red ones to ripen a bit more for tomato sauce or for simple enjoyment with a tasty mozzarella.
I’ll use the green ones for a sauce – for sharp cheeses, juicy pork chops, for our Thanksgiving turkey, or for bruschetta toppings. And this year, the challenge was not just what sort of sauce to create with all the green tomatoes…but what about those peaches, too?
This summer, Pino’s peach trees gifted us with juicy red goodness: the red peach variety might be Sagittaria but who knows..? Our three peach trees sprouted from peach pits Peppa had given us. (For her, they are simply “pesche”). I had frozen most the peaches for desserts all winter but not all of them.
The green tomatoes and ripe peaches. Why not combine them?
Try it: you’ll find that peachy green tomato sauce tasty.
Here’s how to make it:
Peachy Green Tomato Sauce
Wash tomatoes, peaches and finely dice three garlic cloves. Dice tomatoes if large and not necessary if tomatoes are small like most of ours (about the size of a grape). Chop peaches finely (I used about 4).
Cover the bottom of a saucepan with olive oil. Add diced garlic cloves and simmer til just golden, then add tomatoes. After a few minutes, add the diced peaches.
Simmer til soft then douse with balsamic vinegar (about 1 c). Simmer a few minutes more. Try this sauce on meats, sharp cheeses, and bruschettas topped with cheese varieties. Buon appetito!
..and here’s a “peachless” green tomato sauce, using bell pepper and arugula instead:
Green Tomato Sauce with Arugula and Peppers
Finely dice the larger tomatoes, as needed (you’ll need 2 – 3 c of tomatoes) and dice 3 garlic cloves (or more). Chop finely the arugula (a small bunch) and dice the bell pepper (one).
Cover saucepan with olive oil, adding at once garlic cloves, tomatoes, bell peppers. Simmer for about ten minutes until vegetables tender.
Add the arugula.
Sprinkle with a dash wine vinegar. Simmer so that vinegar evaporates….and then add balsamci vinegar (about 1/4 c) and simmer til the balsamic evaporates. Optional: add ginger! Or experiment with your favorite herbs, spices.