In some respects I know we all dread getting older. I have one gray hair. It comes in on the top of my head right around where my part is, and it never grows as long as the rest. I imagine this has something to do with the fact I pluck it, but don’t tell. It’s our little secret.
What I find marvelous about the years is the way I have changed. I’ve grown taller then my mom, whom I like to kiss on the forehead. I actually enjoy running now, which I still believe is a rather mindless and pointless activity, but by the end I feel so alive! The best gift of aging has certainly been food. I didn’t used to like mushrooms, ground beef, yams, sweet potatoes, mushy things of any kind. I have just finished telling you how I didn’t like eggs. I detested tomatoes, pudding, lima beans (on principle), soup, meat loaf, lasagna…You get the idea. I could go on, but I’ve already raised my own eyebrows.
So let’s talk about tomatoes. If you don’t like them, I’m truly sorry. Please re-visit them when you are older and wiser. Okay I’m not necessarily old or wise, but I certainly have come to adore them. We could talk about a lot of different tomatoes, but for today I’m going to keep it to one: cherry tomatoes. They are little round balls of goodness. Their firm skin pops between your teeth in a refreshing release of juice. Their sweetness is matched by their acidity and the meatiness of them gives you something to chew on. To top it all off, because they are so small, they’re an easy on the go snack.
Trader Joes has some of the best deals on cherry tomatoes. I caution though, flip the container over and make sure you aren’t getting a bad batch. There is nothing worse then getting home, opening up your cherry tomatoes and finding the bottom ones have spoiled.
We had some heirloom cherry tomatoes which were on the brink of going bad. In my quest to never let anything spoil, I put them to good use. I turned them into a sweet and easy tomato sauce. Mixed with sautéed onions, left over chicken and pasta from the pantry – an easy, quick, delicious and as always cheap meal was ready for dinner.
Pasta with Cherry Tomato Sauce
4 TBS olive oil, plus more as needed
2 cups cherry tomatoes
½ TBS dried basil
1 tsp dry thyme
Salt and Pepper
3 cloves garlic
1 TBS honey
½ pound whole-wheat pasta of choice
1 medium red onion, chopped (optional)
1 cup chicken, chopped (optional)
¼ cup parmesan (optional)
Heat 4 TBS olive oil in a large fry pan. Add tomatoes, basil, thyme, salt and pepper. Sauté on medium until skins have begun splitting and juices are released.
Add garlic and sauté until fragrant.
Transfer to a blender, add honey and puree until smooth (add olive oil as needed). Check seasonings and adjust to taste.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook pasta as directed.
In the same fry pan as the tomatoes were cooked, sauté the onions. Add sauce and chicken back to the pan. Toss pasta with the sauce.
Top with Parmesan. http://baguettetastewonderbreadbudget.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/01/Pasta-with-Cherry-Tomato-Sauce.pdf