Beautiful Bounty: almost too gorgeous to eat!

Sep 22, 2021 | 0 comments

Gorgeous! Delicious, too!

Our down-the-road part-time neighbors were in town over the weekend and brought us bounty from their garden in Oregon City.  Tomatoes!  So gorgeous!  Almost too beautiful to eat.  Almost.  The biggest, reddest ones are Heartlands and, though I was told the names of the others, I have already forgotten.  I’m bad at remembering names — tomatoes, people… I’m a non-discriminating forgetter.

I also forget why my dad didn’t especially like tomatoes.  I don’t think he minded them in sauce, but during my growing-up days, we didn’t have many salads or raw fruits or vegetables.  I do remember, though, that when we did have sliced tomatoes as a side dish, dad put sugar on them!  Sugar!  I was a salt-and-pepper girl, following my mother’s example.

Corn-on-the-Cob (Nyel’s favorite!) and English Cucumbers!

Some way I associate my father’s tomato hesitancy with some of the old “poisoned apple” folklore from the 1700s.  Not that my dad was that old, mind you, though he would have been the first to say that Bostonians (and he was one!) were provincial in the extreme. It was one of the reasons he moved west.  Tomatoes may well have still be suffering from the thought that people got sick and died after eating them — which was true if they were eating off pewter plates. Because tomatoes are so high in acidity, when placed on this particular tableware, the fruit would leach lead from the plate, resulting in many deaths from lead poisoning. No one made this connection between plate and poison at the time; the tomato was picked as the culprit.

I think tomatoes also got a bad rap because they are a part of the deadly nightshade family but, thankfully we’ve all (Bosonians included) gotten past that.  These days tomatoes are consumed around the world in countless varieties. More than one and half billion tons of tomatoes are produced commercially every year.

But I’m here to tell you that none (as in not one tomato out of those many tons) can hold a candle to the garden bounty that we received day before yesterday.  Oh!  And did I mention the corn and the cucumbers?  And, as for those tomatoes — I don’t even think my dad would have ruined them with sugar!







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