Imagine your favorite food in the whole, wide world. Now, imagine that you had a seemingly endless supply right in front of you, and you could take as much or as many as you wanted – all for free! Sure sounds crazy, doesn’t it? It’s exactly what happened to me the other day when I visited Bedner’s Farm Fresh Market, one of my favorite local farms here in South Florida. Because it’s the end of tomato season here, the farmers told us we could pick as many tomatoes as we wanted, all for free!
Now, this farmer’s market has all kinds of healthy, fresh produce that I love to eat, but it’s no secret that tomatoes are my all-time favorite. When we got there, I was excited to see rows and rows of tomatoes as far as the eye could see. The vines were absolutely loaded with plump, juicy, bright red tomatoes, and as I rode in on the tractor, I thought I might have been dreaming. I brought Patty, the Director of my Test Kitchen, with me that day; we looked at each other and knew we were in for quite a treat!
The friendly farmers told us that we also had the option of heading over to the strawberry fields, but I had my mind set on those tomatoes. They gave us plastic grocery bags, and put us off to work, picking as many tomatoes as our hearts desired. It brought a smile to my face to see so many families and children having so much fun choosing the very best tomatoes to bring home to their loved ones!
Howard, who heads up day-to-day operations for us, also came with us, and boy was I glad! We needed all the help we could get to carry all of those tomatoes back with us. The three of us struggled back to the tractor with bags and bags of tomatoes. We even played a fun little game on the ride back where we all guessed how many tomatoes we’d each picked. None of us came close to guessing that we’d picked 100 pounds of tomatoes that day! That’s right, we weighed them back at the Mr. Food kitchen, and we couldn’t believe our eyes when that scale reached triple-digits. Holy tomatoes!
We picked up plenty of fresh basil from the farm, too – we knew we’d need it for all of the delicious tomato-mozzarella salads we’d be making! Hey, we could also use some of that basil to top these wonderful fresh tomato flatbreads for a fun twist on pizza night. And as excited as I was to make hundreds and hundreds of my favorite tomato sandwiches, what I was really looking forward to was getting back home so that I could share my tomatoes with my family, neighbors, and team at the Mr. Food office.
Even though tomato season is over here in South Florida, for many of you up north, it’s just beginning! Be sure to look out for those delicious fresh tomatoes in your area soon, because there’s just nothing like a fresh-picked tomato…“OOH IT’S SO GOOD!!”
If you could have an endless supply of any fruit or vegetable, what would it be?