Saturday, November 6, 2010

It Really Works!

Green Tomatoes Leftover from Summer
I was a doubter about the whole ripening-tomatoes-in-the-basement plan.  Everybody said they would rot.  Everybody said they wouldn't taste the same.

My daughter and I journey to the basement late yesterday and sit cross-legged before a box of tomatoes wrapped in newspaper.  Just a few weeks ago, we gathered all the green tomatoes from our garden before the first frost.  

She unwraps the first one.
Tomatoes Unwrapped! 

It's a juicy deep red.  It's a brilliant and fragrant red. 

We can hardly believe it.  My daughter and I unwrap each red treasure.  The experience is better than picking them off the vine.  Add the element of doubt and surprise, and all of a sudden, we have a celebration on our hands.

Basement-Ripened Tomatoes
We carry our produce to the kitchen.  Outside, the cold wind blows.  There's a chance of snow, and the gray sky announces winter.  But my kitchen says its summer--the kind with fresh tomatoes and a counter top full of vegetables.

Roasting Tomatoes and Garlic
We get to work.  The little one decides we must make homemade. . . something.  We chop each tomato and roast them with cloves of garlic.  Then we remove skins and seeds and blend the whole thing into a delicious soup.  We've got grilled cheese sandwiches crisping and homemade garden tomato soup simmering.

I'm so thrilled that those tomatoes never ripened this summer. I'm so happy for that particular disappointment.

When Plan A fails, Plan B often turns out better--more magical--because of the unexpected, against-all-odds sort of outcome. The truth of it all hits me like the cold wind against this window.  Plan A has to fail sometimes because God's got a surprise in mind that I'll unwrap when the cold wind blows, in the sorrow of a dark basement.  That's when I'll need it most.


Elaina Baker said...

God does really make amazing things, doesn't he.

Anonymous said...

Is there a similar strategy for when you buy those crappy not-really-ripe tomatoes from the grocery store, and live in California without a basement? PS I just found your blog and look forward to reading more.

Kathy said...

I wish I had known about this before I threw out all of my green tomatoes! A new quest for next year! Thanks Heather - enjoy your soup.

Country Girl said...

Nothing says comfort to me better than grilled cheese and tomato soup. And homemade soup? Complete bliss.
What a nice surprise!

Meg McGinty said...

Homegrown/local/organic produce = Miracles, Change, and Love!

Nilly said...

Hi Heather, I'm glad that this worked for you and that you saved (and enjoyed) all that produce! We do that all the time here in Egypt, with fruits like mango that have fallen off their trees before they've ripened. These little miracles are amazing, aren't they?