Earlier in the season, I lamented my lack of appropriately-sized and -shaped fruit for fried green tomatoes, but apparently I should have kept my mouth shut.
My Brandywine plant has been setting out good fruit—not huge numbers of tomatoes, but good-sized ones that look pretty, for the most part—but the fact is that they weigh an awful lot. The weight of tomatoes is something that has totally taken me aback this year—after last year’s black walnut stuntation (I know it’s not a word, but bear with me…), I had no idea what I was in for. It seems that starting with good seedlings and planting them in a beneficial location leads to mad overgrowth—of branches, of leaves, of tomatoes.
As a result, I’ve staked my tomatoes all over the place, but mostly in support of random branches that are sending out fruit into the air as if they think they’re at the edge of the Grand Canyon or something.
A branch broke earlier in the season already, so it didn’t surprise me all that much when I walked outside Friday morning to find a branch of the Brandywine plant pointing toward the ground instead of the sky. At first, I didn’t really notice that anything was wrong, but upon closer inspection, it became clear the branch had to come off, and the three tomatoes that took the joyride down with it (and, to be fair, caused said joyride) had to retire to my kitchen.
I trimmed off the branch, checked for other impending catastrophes underway on that particular plant, and took the three green babies inside. I lined them up on the windowsill at first, then decided to check out the power of ethylene and stored two of them in a paper bag, just to see if they’ll actually ripen. The third? It’s the perfect size and shape for fried and green, and it has a cast iron skillet with its name on it.