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Sunday, May 1, 2016

Your Home & Family: Summer's Bounty -- Tomatoes in September!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Good things are there for you in September tomatoes! Due to the wet, cool weather, many gardens are just now seeing the results of tending tomatoes through the summer. Here are some tips and an easy salsa recipe for this great taste treat!

Most folks know that tomatoes are a source of vitamin C (rated "very good," in fact), and they also know that vitamin C is very fragile -- about 25 percent is lost just by heating foods to boiling, and over half is lost when the cooking period is over 10-20 minutes. To get the most vitamin C from tomatoes, eat them ripe and fresh.

While fresh fruits and vegetables are still available from your gardens, the farmers markets, roadside stands and groceries, use the following tips to select, prepare, and store your tomatoes.

Tomatoes should be washed in cold water before use. For salads and sandwiches, slice a tomato horizontally (just lay the tomato on its side with the stem at one end, and slice down to prevent the juice and seeds from leaking out).

With care, mature green tomatoes will keep and ripen for about 4-6 weeks in the fall. Harvest tomatoes from vigorous vines, tomatoes from nearly spent vines are more subject to decay. Harvest fruit just before the first killing frost.

To store, pick tomatoes and remove the stems. Reduce rot by disinfecting fruit by washing in water with 1-1/2 teaspoon bleach per gallon of water. Dry thoroughly with a soft cloth and pack fruit 1 or 2 layers deep in shallow boxes. Remove fruits as they ripen.

Here is an easy salsa recipe for you to enjoy!

Easy Salsa

Ingredients:

2 pounds Roma tomatoes (about 14), diced

1 cup onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 cans green chiles, chopped

teaspoon cumin

1 cup cilantro, chopped

Tabasco sauce to taste

Directions:

Combine all ingredients into a bowl and refrigerate. Serve with tortilla chips.