In mid November we’ve visited a farm in the rural hinterlands of Hamburg. It is called Hof vorm Deich and grows mainly organic vegetables. They aim to collect and grow open-pollinated as well as heirloom varieties and sell these delicacies in the Hamburg region.
In one of their greenhouses they grow all kinds of tomatoes – from little Black Cherries to Green Zebras and Cœur de Bœufs. Since it was already November, they decided to cut down the – surprisingly big – tomato plants and bring them to the compost. However, thanks to the “cosy” environment, a good many of plants were still bearing fruits. Instead of throwing away those mellow as well as unripened tomatoes, the owners organized an open day to save the tomatoes: people could come to the farm, help them to chop down the plants and then get as many tomatoes as they want. This sounded quite interesting and so we decided to take part on this activity…
In the end of the afternoon we’ve got quite a bunch of yellow, pink, red, orange, black, little, round, oval, elongated as well as kind of gnarly tomatoes – what a pleasure for eyes and mouth! We ate the mellow ones, the unripened were preserved – the bigger ones in to some kind of savory confiture, the little ones into a peppery pickle. Here are the recipes, which I`ve got from friends:
::::::::: Tomato Confiture with Pistachios, Dates & Vanilla :::::::::
- 1 kg tomatoes // finely chopped
- 4 tbsp. Pistachios
- 8 dates // finely chopped
- 1 red onion // finely chopped
- 1 vanilla pod // scratched out
- 500 g sugar
- 1 sachet of gelling agent
- salt & pepper=> mix all the ingredients, let it infuse for about 15 minutes, and then bring to the boil for about 10 minutes. Pour in clean as well as warmed bottling jars and let them cool down “bottom up”.
=> best with cheese & nut bread
::::::::: peppery Tomato Pickle :::::::::
- 1 kg cherry tomatoes // make in each one 3-5 little holes with a toothpick
=> mix with plenty of salt and let it soak for 2 days, then pour away the water and pile the cherry tomatoes in bottling jars
- 2 red onions // sliced
- 2 tbsp pepper // black & pink
- 1 tbsp mustard seeds
- chili peppers // sliced or dried ones
- 1.5 l cider vinegar=> bring the vinegar and the spices to boil and then pour over the tomatoes. Let them cool down “bottom up” and wait about 3 months before eating.
=> best with Fondue & Raclette
Photos: All rights reserved.