The fall season is truly upon us now, and the garden aspect of our urban homestead is winding down. I took a break from writing to harvest the last green tomatoes —  a treat you won’t find at the store. I’ll be making green tomato relish again. We still have a few jars from last year’s batch, but you can never have too much of a good thing. A friend shared a recipe for green tomato cake. An odd sounding desert she told me, but her family polished it off quickly at a recent gathering. That’s a strong endorsement in my opinion. I’ll use gluten-free flour. Mmmm. I can taste that cake right now.

A pleasurable aspect of growing food is sharing it with friends. Some of my green tomatoes went home with a writer friend and a Parisian fashionista. Tomatoes canned earlier in the season often travel home with dinner guests.

From my canning shelf: yellow tomato sauce, green tomato relish, chili sauce, stewed tomatoes

I enjoy the process of caring for the soil, planting seeds, and tending plants. It’s hard to top the satisfaction of eating food you’ve grown. We grow three tomato varieties, beefsteak, lemon boys, and Michael Pollans (a variety named after an author and activist who promoted sustainable living). The plants have been uprooted and added to the composter to await reincarnation in garden soil two years from now. Seeds have been dried will rest until next summer.

Much like writing a novel, in gardening there is a season for all things. Patience is required, but the rewards are great.

By the way, I store my canning recipes here if you’d like to drop in for a peek.