Summer Bounty: Tomatoes, Herbs, Eggplant, and Fruit!

Atlanta CSA Basket

We are certainly in the dog days of summer now, and the mix of extreme heat, lots of rain, and dry periods in between have been great for our veggie baskets! More on what’s coming this week and next and an easy eggplant recipe after the jump!

Your baskets have a nice bunch of basil once again this week, and next week you can look forward to some spicy arugula. YUM! But the real winners this summer have been the fruit. I’m sure you’ve been enjoying the watermelons and blueberries in your baskets, and this week we are getting our very first cantaloupes. The melon goodness is going to continue next week with another heirloom variety, so get those melon ballers ready, you guys!

The melons are rolling in, and so are the tomatoes! Margie says that this year has yielded one of the best heirloom tomato crops she’s ever seen. Most summers she has to do a lot of legwork to get us those big, ugly, delicious heirloom slicing tomatoes, but this year the tomatoes are beating a path to her door. In this week’s basket we have three types of heirlooms: a pint of yellow sungolds and two types of heirloom slicers. Tomato jam, anyone?

tomato jam

Next week we’re going to move from the heirlooms to a variety of red hybrid tomatoes, so get those canning jars ready! These are perfect for putting up stewed or making into tomato sauce, so you can have a taste of summer long after the weather turns.

This basket is a heavy one, and after the melon the main culprit is eggplant! I know that folks start to get sick of all the eggplant at this point in the summer, so that’s the focus of this week’s recipe: babaganoush! If you’re not big on dips, you might also like these savory curried eggplant muffins that I made for a crafternoon last summer. They were a hit!

Babaganoush Recipe

Adapted from The Fat Free Vegan Kitchen

Ingredients

  • 1 large eggplant, sliced in half
  • olive oil, for brushing
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon tahini (optional, but it makes it nice and creamy)
  • ground cumin

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 425F. Brush your eggplant halves with the olive oil and bake for 30-45  minutes, until the eggplant softens. Once it cools, peel off the skin, scoop out at least some of the seeds, and dice up the remaining flesh.
  2. Toss all of the ingredients – including your diced eggplant – into a blender or food processor, and blend until smooth. You can add more olive oil or lemon juice if the dip seems too thick to you.

Click here to print out the recipe.

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