LeAnne Martin
AuthorSpeaker
Beauty and the Beholder

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Heirloom Beauty

When I was growing up, summer for our family meant tomato sandwiches. My grandmother had a garden for most of my childhood and my mother and sister and uncle would help her tend it while I watched TV game shows inside with Papa. I wasn't old enough to help, and he wasn't in good health. They would work and work and work and come in hot and tired with their bounty of vegetables, including big, red, juicy tomatoes. We'd eat a tomato sandwich for lunch and take some home with us, along with green beans, corn, and other veggies. Those tomatoes live in my memory as one of the staples of my childhood.

A few weeks ago, my daughter and I went to a small, organic farmer's market held weekly in our town. There we saw tomatoes of every size and color and shade: red, pink, orange, yellow, green. Little "chocolate" cherry tomatoes along with yellow cherry tomatoes that were shaped like tiny squashes. Small green ones for frying. And big beautiful heirlooms the size of my palm. The farmer spent several minutes explaining to us the characteristics of each color and type of tomato. Honestly, I had no idea there was such variety! My daughter and I bought two of the heirlooms, one green, a container of the cherries, and, because a pretty bouquet of pink and purple flowers.

I gave one heirloom to my parents because I knew they would fully appreciate it. When I sliced into ours, the juice and earthy smell were released and I was taken back to those summers of my childhood. Ahh...That was the best tomato sandwich I've had in 25 years.

1 comment:

Brenda Leyland said...

Fresh tomato sandwiches on a summer day. Ahhhhhh.... I have my own delicious memories about tomatoes.

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