Tomato town

Last winter Shanti and I sat down to plan fruit and vegetable plantings for 2017. If you've ever planted a garden you know that those seed catalogs you get in the winter can be dangerous. There you are, hunkering by the fire with a hot toddy and a magazine full of beautiful edibles. Once you've earmarked every single page, you fill out your order and wait.

As exciting as it is to think about colorful fruits and vegetables in the gray cold of winter, what you're really doing is giving yourself all sorts of work. I am a victim of this every .. single .. year. Except this year I took Shanti with me on this rabbit hole. Thankfully she is able to sell to much of the product to other cooks, kitchens, and homes over the season, but I for one was not ready for the onslaught of tomatoes, eggplant, peppers, and the list goes on. In addition to my already busy work schedule, in order for us to actually put use to all this product I've got to preserve it. Literally hundreds of pounds of product and I have been able to preserve a little over fifty pounds. 50. Five-zero.

So what am I planning on changing for next year? My schedule. I have already blocked off multiple days next year where I plan to process product. I realize the risk of the product not being ripe, but it's all I can think of doing this early in the game. It will also help that we'll have a full kitchen on site next year and we won't need to schlep food all over.

So here's to hoping we can stretch the season out a bit and hopefully share with you throughout the year.

Chris Grebner