notes from maggie's farm
there's only two things that money can't buy
and that's true love and homegrown tomatoes.
You know, I complain too much. Complain about the heat of this summer (already). Complain about sweating and getting up early and my back hurting. Complain about the (lack of) restaurant offerings in this small town. Complain about dog breath, dog fur, dog, well you know. Complain about the crazy neighbors across the way. Complain about hard water, soft economies, the price of gas, and what I don't yet have.
And homegrown tomatoes.
But I love nothing more than summer's crown jewel, the homegrown tomato. When my sweet fella was a small boy, he and his friends ran around his neighborhood during the summer with salt shakers in their back pockets, sneaking ripe tomatoes from gardens not of their own growing. I always count the tomatoes after he brings in the harvest, checking for proof of his earlier wild ways. We celebrate the first tomato of summer, together, thick salted slices snuggled between two pieces of homemade bread, maybe a little fresh basil, and, always, Hellmanns mayonnaise, which I've taken to calling Hellions mayonnaise, in honor of his misspent youth. I often make our mayo from scratch, but this is a summer ceremony that needs no adjustment. It may yet be the best day of summer. Sharing the first homegrown tomato with my favorite guy.
Enjoy Guy, and
tomato and feta pie
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Slice tomatoes about 1/2" thick. Layer in a colander, sprinkling each layer lightly with kosher salt. Allow tomatoes time to release quite a bit of their juices, about 30 minutes. Blot with paper toweling to remove moisture after removing from colander. Lightly toss in a bowl with chopped oregano, minced garlic, sliced scallions, and freshly ground pepper.
In a separate bowl, combine crumbled feta, mayo and yogurt. Set aside.
Layer tomatoes in crust. Spread cheese mixture atop. Pop that pretty little baby in the oven, and bake until bubbly and lightly browned, about 40 minutes. Allow to rest for 15 minutes after removing from oven. Then.........
See, it's really quite simple. You can even make it the day before, and serve it after bringing to room temperature. Or for lunch or dinner the same day. A certain farmer around here eats (what's left) of it cold, straight from the fridge. It serves about 6 people, with a little salad or soup to accompany it.
When you whip up this little baby, maybe you'll be spending a little time being blissfully domestic in your kitchen, humming along to Guy Clark. Or, as you plan the evening's dinner, you'll find yourself tapping your foot as you going through your day, task by task, at your desk. Maybe you'll enjoy a little mellow music after a hectic drive in home bound traffic. Whatever it is you're up to, give Guy Clark a try, one of music's finest storytellers. Think Mark Twain with a guitar.
(I really think i should be paid for that little blurb. Anyone got Guy Clark's number?)