Friday, August 19, 2011

Pick Your Own Tomatoes At Larriland, But You Don't Have To Pick Between The Barbecue

You need to mark your calendar now for a trip or two to Larriland Farm because the pick-your-own fields are hitting their peak.

Peaches, blackberries, raspberries and tomatoes are available now, and the next few weeks start the rush towards apples and pumpkins.  Go fill your bags, and keep room for lunch out in Woodbine.  In July, I recommended a fried chicken picnic with the main dish from Harvest Fried Chicken. Yesterday, we stayed out of the heat by eating a late barbecue lunch at the Town Grill in the Citgo station.

After so much time picking produce, I didn't want to just pick one of Town Grill's barbecue options of pork, chicken, brisket, pitbeef, etc.  So I ordered sliders -- three small, soft buns that came with a half-cup dollop of meat.

Yesterday, we went for peaches and tomatoes with a plan to lay them away for winter.  I even bought some Balls quart canning jars as part of my bumbling effort to learn to pickle and can.
Whoops!  It turns out that it isn't ideal to make canning plans on a smart phone in a brightly-lit field.  Canning seems to work best with big tomatoes or green tomato pickles.  Too bad that I ended up with peaches (which we will freeze) and 20 pounds of cherry tomatoes.  Spectacular tomatoes -- and 49 cents a pound -- but they won't survive the heat of a hot-water bath.  It wasn't until I got home that I realized that green cherry tomatoes would have made pickles firm enough to can for winter.

Anyone have suggestions for what to do with the remaining 10 pounds of cherries?  I have four quarts of quick pickles soaking in the kitchen now.  I'm leaning towards drying the rest in my oven.

If you go for tomatoes, walk the entire field to see what's ripe.  Some guy picked 100+ pounds on Wednesday so we found very few large tomatoes.  We spent a bunch of time working one variety that was past its peak -- only to realize that there were gorgeous varities full of perfect tomatoes up against the road.  Click here for all of the Larriland Farm posts.


Amber Mc said...

My very favorite way to use up cherry tomatoes:

Wendi said...

I haven't made this yet - but have plans to try it. I feel sure cherries would work in it.

Anonymous said...

Sun-dried tomatoes taste good in the winter.

graciesmom said...

Google "freezing cherry tomatoes" and you'll see some good ideas. One guy drizzles tomato halves with olive oil & herbs, oven roasts then freezes. Imagine how good that would taste come February !

Lolly said...

We were there 2 weekends ago and picked so many berries - I made lots of raspberry jam! Also got some leeks - there had a lot in the fields when I was there. Love Larriland!

Gonna have to try some of these ideas - I have so many cherry tomatoes in my garden now...

HowChow said...

These looks great. Thanks.

@Amber -- Do you ever freeze those slow-roasted tomatoes?