The tomato. In my house this week, it is where agriculture meets art. August is that time of year when I, a self proclaimed tomato fanatic, find myself watching the mounds of the sweet juicy fruits in a literal rainbow of colors cover every inch of counter space, and wonder if I am enjoying the glorious abundance enough. Torn between freezing them for later–the best antidote to the winter blues that I can come up with–and just eating every single one of them raw while I stand in the kitchen and think about it. And somewhere in that stream of thoughts that runs wild through my mind I think of all the fancy–and not so fancy–recipes that I should be trying.But I also just like to look at them. They are so beautiful, the gorgeous colors and shapes transform my very simple kitchen into a gallery of sculpture and the possibility of painting that I imagine while popping Sun Golds into my mouth. I photograph them with my phone and with my digital SLR and I arrange them according to the rainbow, and I separate them into like sizes, and put them on white plates so I can enjoy the contrast, and I arrange them on the butcher block and watch how the late light from the kitchen window amplifies the colors so that they don’t even look real. But actually they look so real that I am awed by what can possibly make this happen, right in my own back yard.
Nothing makes me happier than walking through my garden and picking a few perfectly ripe tomatoes, slicing a few of them up and putting them on a plate sprinkled with a little salt, and saving a few back as models for a watercolor.