Tomatoes are beautiful this year. Many are on the vine, ripening now. Our extended warm, sunny weather has been good to them. The plants themselves are looking autumn like, yellowing leaves showing off the reddening nightshade berries.
People used to be afraid of tomatoes, thinking them to be an equivalent to Sleeping Beauty's poisoned apple. Some people claim real life allergies related to eating not only the tomato, but food of all the nightshades. Still others define the tomato as a superfood.
It does seem, for this table anyway, that tomatoes are an essential human food, if not for its super nutritional qualities, then because of its flavor. From a Beefsteak on a (veggie) burger to fresh mozzarella and basil, to sweet and savory pies, the tomato has definitely become a companion plant.
This year's weather shows, too, how gardeners use tomatoes as signal plants for defining the season. "The tomatoes are slow this year." "The tomatoes are waiting for the warmer days to come." "The tomatoes are reacting to a month of steady warmth and sun."
These tomatoes joyfully offered themselves to became sauce for a thin crusted pizza.