Thursday, July 2, 2009

Taste of Summer

It recently came to my attention that many of you have never heard of, much less indulged in, the glory that is the tomato sandwich.

You poor, poor souls.

Growing up in North Carolina, tomato sandwiches were lunch several days a week when tomatoes were in season. (I think my personal record may have been to devour 6 at one sitting. {Hey, I was a growing boy!}). Hardly a 2-week period would pass in the summer months that someone wasn’t stopping buy my house to dump off a load of tomatoes harvested fresh from the garden.

If you’ve never had a fresh, ripe tomato shortly after it was picked from the vine, you are missing out. Unlike those found in your grocery stores (yes, even the ones in your beloved Whole Foods), these tomatoes were not picked while still green and left to ripen on the way to market. These tomatoes were ripened on the vine and in my sandwich within hours after being harvested. The fruit was never chalky, but rather juicy and exploding with flavor. Quite often juice would run down my arm as I ate. This NEVER stopped the eating process, just so you know.

Here in So. Cal neighbors never arrive with bags of free, fresh tomatoes, and thus my really good tomato sandwiches are few and far between. However, I was able to score a few that were quite delicious the other day at a farmers’ market. After throwing them between some good white bread with a dollop of mayo, I was transported back to being a shirtless, sweaty 10-year old in need of a quick lunch while cramming them down my throat as fast as they would go. I suggest you do the same before they are again out of season and your taste buds are forced to suffer another long year without one of the happiest experiences they will ever know.


1 ripe tomato
2 slices of white bread
Salt & pepper

Spread mayo on both slices of bread. Cut tomato into ¼” thick slices. Place on bread. Sprinkle with salt & pepper. Eat. Repeat.

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