... let them be ripe in time for the family reunion in two weeks.
The backstory: My mother's mother is the youngest of 11 (10? who can remember?) children. Years ago she and her siblings started getting together once a year for a reunion, the centerpiece of which is a shared meal that is part family gathering, part cook-off. For as long as I can remember, my grandmother and grandfather brought a platter of peeled, sliced tomatoes from their garden in Indiana. My grandparents were proud of their (huge) garden, and rightfully so - if you've never had a tomato that's never been touched by the icy hands of a refrigerator, one that is only hours off the vine, you don't know what you're missing. Between the tomatoes and corn that literally wasn't picked until the water to cook it was starting to heat up on the stove, we had some memorable meals when my parents and I used to go out to visit The Muggiest Place On Earth In August.
My grandmother has been in a nursing home for the past few years, so my aunt and uncle stepped up to the plate (so to speak) and have been taking care of the tomato situation. But things may be a little hectic for them this year, thanks to some medical issues in the family, so while I'm sure they'll attend, I don't know that Aunt Lois is going to have two hours to peel and slice tomatoes. I'm hoping to have enough of my own tomatoes to carry on the tradition for the third generation. If I throw in some from the local farmer's market, I could probably add some cucumbers and cilantro from my garden and bring a fatoush salad, too, which no one but me and Jason would eat but would make me feel like I tried.
The tomatoes shown above are just starting to barely turn color at the tops, so I guess there's hope.