Friday, August 17, 2007

What happens when the crop comes in... Oh and Big FAT Spiders!

Yesterday I spent 5 hours! in the kitchen. I peeled pounds and pounds of tomatoes by dropping them in boiling water. Then started cooking up all my garden treats.
Two kinds of sauce that will go in the freezer:

Some stuffed tomatoes that Lisa saw in a cookbook and requested I make. I thought I'd surprise her. When she got home from work last night she had one and said "Why'd you put pine nuts in them?" Umm...that's what the recipe called for and you requested I make them. Her. "I hate pine nuts."

Finally Eggplant Parmigiana.

All those cherry tomatoes will go in salads or on kabobs with the green peppers. I know there is a whole other load of tomatoes out in that garden and I just can't look at them right now. All my recipes came from the Silver Palate Cookbook and everything (IMO) was delicious. I had the latest issue of Bon Appetit because it said on the cover: Summer's Last Stand, Quick and easy recipes for all that great produce. I'll check that out next round. But look at those mini meatball sandwiches on the cover.

So here's the spider part. When the kids were still very young I suggested (you men would probably call it nagging) to John that he build a one of those wooden swingset things that everyone seems to have. Seeing as he's a carpenter it shouldn't be a problem. He finally did it. It was magnificent. The best part was it had a clubhouse with and upstairs and downstairs. The kids were so excited.

They decide one night to sleep in it and I make a nice big cozy bed in it. They weren't out there long when they came in the house. It seems they were all nestled in the bed when a BIG, FAT spider dropped right over there heads and began making a web. We discovered that night that they were everywhere! They come out of nowhere every August and September at dusk and start weaving these webs.

These pictures just don't do justice. These suckers are fat and BIG! Way bigger than I want my spiders. They have simply ruined sitting outside on August evening. I am always afraid they will get me. Ignorant I know. I don't like feeling animosity towards nature and I know fear is just ignorance but I can't overcome the feelings these big, fat spiders give me. Just taking those pictures was traumatic. And those two spiders were doing their work right in the doorways (there were 3 total just in that one location) of the ivy covered house. Forget about sitting in there in the evening. Who could relax. I shudder just thinking about them.

Enjoy your weekend everyone. May it be spiderless.


Blogger dawn said...

Mary the food looks delish, as for the spiders I know exactly what your talking about. They have those big ones in the Hamptons and every Oct when we're out there I marvel at the intriquit details but would never want them near me!!!!!! Have a great weekend.

8/17/2007 10:23:00 AM  
Blogger enigma4ever said...

OMg....I have been drooling all over and monk are full of goodies...yum...and about spiders...know all about it...they can be so annoying..

8/17/2007 11:12:00 AM  
Blogger Robert Rouse said...

Spiders serve a purpose, but something tells me you serve a better meal! The nominations are all in for the Blog World Report Awards. Make sure you vote soon.

8/17/2007 12:18:00 PM  
Blogger Cream said...

The Tomato Queen! That's your middle name, Mary.
I love all your ingredients and your dishes. Bothe the stuffed tomatoes and aubergines look very tasty.

I'm not keen on spiders either. Yuk!

8/17/2007 12:20:00 PM  
Blogger QUASAR9 said...


8/17/2007 02:08:00 PM  
Blogger TomCat said...

Dang it, Mary, you made me hungry!! ;-)

On the spiders, hit them with a spritz of hair spray. That puts them out faster than any insecticide you can buy.

8/17/2007 03:26:00 PM  
Blogger Kvatch said...

When I was a kid, fresh tomatoes always meant gazpacho! Man do I miss that. Mama Kvatch doesn't make it anymore (hard on the hands), and mine just doesn't quite taste the same.

8/17/2007 03:41:00 PM  
Blogger Peacechick Mary said...

Yummy, yummy, yummmy - I've got tomatoes in my tummy! Doesn't like pine nuts? What kind of subversive kid are you raising?

Spiders in August and September - very, very busy. Everyplace I go in the garden, I have to be swatting down their webs.

8/17/2007 05:02:00 PM  
Blogger Chuck said...

I hate spiders. They are out to get you. They will bite your ass and they will bite children. They don't discriminate.

We had a really bad experience with one that landed our first baby in the hospital that got bitten by a particularly nasty poisonous one. Forget that nature thing. Nature is combat & they'll get you if you don't get them first.

I heard that no one person is any further away from a spider than eight feet their entire life.

8/17/2007 05:07:00 PM  
Blogger Chuck said...


8/17/2007 05:08:00 PM  
Blogger Katie McKenna said...

lol... spiders are pretty interesting and cool.... they can spin a web in 30's that for natural artistic talent?

Yes, they can be dangerous... but the majority actually do not bite.

Still, I understand that not all people find them acceptable.... like snakes.. some peeps do not like snakes..

Anyway, very impressive garden Mary! cheers...

8/18/2007 12:33:00 AM  
Blogger la bellina mammina said...

Oh yum!!! What a feast!

Love that swingset and the tree house, but eewww, spiders!! Big, fat ones too! Will you be doing anything to get rid of them??

8/18/2007 03:29:00 AM  
Blogger Mary said...

Dawn- The problem is they are hard to avoid. In every freaking doorway and its dark so you don't see them.

E4E-I will have to stop by Monks and see whats up.

Robert- Voted! Surprised to see myself.

Cream- I am definitely the tomato queen this month.

Quasar- Definitely

Tomcat- Excellent tip!

Kvatch- That is what I will be makeing next. I've been craving it.

Peacechick- And her daddy has Armenian blood. She's supposed to love pine nuts!

Chuck- I'm sure that experience was scary. I can't even imagine. Esp. w/the first.

Katie- I don't mind a snake. I mean I don't want to hold them but they don't bother me. I guess w/these guys its just the fact that they are hard to avoid.

La bella- I'm gonna try Tomcat's trick.

8/18/2007 08:39:00 AM  
Blogger The Future Was Yesterday said...

That's the "trouble" with veggie gardens - everything's "ready" at once.:) We've had fresh tomatoes from our patio garden for about a week now. They are SO good...juicy...Mmmmm!!

I share your dislike of spiders!! We have some pretty large ones down here. I keep a close eye on them, believe me!!

8/18/2007 12:03:00 PM  
Blogger Babzy said...

Who needs meatballs when all you need are spiders rolled in bread crumbs.

8/18/2007 01:31:00 PM  
Blogger supergirlest said...

i'm coming to dinner and i'm bringing the family with me!!!!!! YUMILISH! my mouth is watering now, thankyouverymuch!

do you happen to know what kind of spiders those are? they're all over our front porch - AND IN OUR BASEMENT! i've caught a few in the house. me no likey spideys! i've had no luck identifying them.

8/18/2007 10:54:00 PM  
Blogger Shrink Wrapped Scream said...

I laughed so hard at the pine nut response. Yup, my little darlings and yours would get along great together!

Spiders. My dog nearly lost his nose to one earlier this year - and it wasn't even poisonous (thankfully, we don't get that variety around here) he's allergic, apparently. As am I - to the sodding vet bill's.. Let me at 'em, I'll squish those spiders of yours, no problem!

8/19/2007 10:58:00 AM  
Blogger TomCat said...

LOL! You won't need that hair spary, Mary. Just sic Scream on them. ;-)

8/19/2007 01:17:00 PM  
Blogger Nick said...

You simply must have me over for dinner.

8/19/2007 07:10:00 PM  
Blogger Donnie McDaniel said...

You done went and got me hungry now. I love fresh veggies.

8/20/2007 04:17:00 AM  
Blogger JM said...

Funny thing; now you've got me craving tomatoes even-though I'm not that big of a fan except in their cooked form. A fresh sauce or stewed tomatoes are just fine, but in their raw form I'm about as fond of them as I am of those big-assed spiders.

8/20/2007 03:19:00 PM  
Blogger Mary said...

TUA- Yes. It's gonna be tomatoes everyday for quite a while.


Supergirlest- Did you see the link Anonymous left. You will def find your spider there.

SWS- Yes I suppose I should have had here approve the ingredients list...
Right and then there's the pets and vets.

Tomcat- I think I have many allies here.

Nick- Absolutely!

Donnie- I would think you grow some yourself.

JM- The tomatoes I can take in any form. The spiders, sadly no form pleases me.

8/20/2007 06:50:00 PM  

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