A Lesson in Relationships

It appears that my tomato and pepper plants don't do well together. I don't think it's a personal thing, I just think it is like a few of my past relationships, just not a good fit. The soil Ph, nutrients they both take in and emit, you know, the usual relationship drama. So now my dreams of all of those lovely red and yellow bells and smoky poblanos have been dashed by the reality of a "personality conflict". I keep waiting to hear the peppers say, "It's not you, it's me. I just need to get some things figured out". More drama than I could have imagined. Oy. Next year I will make sure they are not next to each other. I think a row of marigolds after the tomatoes might be in order. Did you know that marigolds love tomatoes? Me neither. My fabulous 85 year old crotchety neighbor (that I love and has been gardening for decades. His butter crunch lettuce is a thing of beauty) told me the best way to deal with the plants as I put them in. "Listen little lady, you gotta tell em as you put em in the dirt, 'Grow or don't dammit!" He is a smart man.

I also had to comment on last night's dinner. I know, I am a total food dork. Dinner was pan seared lamb chops and stuffed tomatoes and it was to die for. THIS was a match made in heaven and is the way all good relationships are supposed to be, complimentary and supportive, exciting and passionate, and just damn sexy together. I have done the chops as simply as possible all season because the flavor is so exquisite that anything other than salt and pepper is just an insult. I seared them medium rare and did the stuffed tomato with red instead of yellow tomatoes and added a little white wine to the olive oil when I tossed the mushrooms at the beginning. Don't be intimidated by the steps, as they are all super easy. The watermelon pictured above is my third in as many weeks. They have been indescribably delicious. It is a Sugar Baby that is local. Mostly seedless with a pulpy flesh that can barely contain the juice. If I could just bottle all of these glorious tastes and smells to pull off the shelf in February when I am dying from the winter blahs.
For now I am off to teach some swim lessons and soak up some more of this summer of the gods.

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