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This is usually a problem in late September, early October. You picked all the ripe tomatoes and the green ones are taking forever because there’s no more summer heat. Clock is ticking. You need that garden space for lettuces, kales and broccoli.

Time to let go the summer.

Or it could be the beginning of July, tomatoes were ripening one at a time. You held your breathe, sampled one plant, “Good …sweet and savory …” Move on to the next variety, “Oh no …” A few days later, it reassured you with its total lack of flavor.

Not giving up, you waited some more, hoping for a reversal of fortune.

Now it’s end of July, it’s pretty clear that you picked a LOSER!

When it comes to growing food, I am as sentimental as Simon Cowell. If you don’t taste good enough to be worthy of my time and my land, you are O.U.T.

For a tomato plant, that means I now have a 15lb of green tomatoes. 2 obvious choices come to mind: Fry them, or pickle them. The latter is less clean-up.

Bath of white vinegar, lemon-verbena-infused simple syrup, generous sprinkle of salt, and 2 hours later, I got myself a pretty decent accompaniment to the duck rillet Dwight and Kim hauled back from Paris just a couple of weeks ago. Pickled green tomatoes is about the crisp texture, clean and simple flavor, which pairs well with anything that’s been simmered for hours in glorious duck fat.

To a better choice, next year.


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