My roommate recently got a job as a mother's helper for a family that has a backyard farm and wonderful vegetable garden. Since they are away on vacation right now, she has been tending the garden and feeding the chickens for them. Curious about this set-up, I accompanied her one day, and I was not only impressed, it gave me ideas!
Not that I can turn our apartment's courtyard into an organic garden just yet, nor do I think I could regularly slaughter chickens for dinner, but it's nice to see how the system works, and with the family away, those beautiful ripe tomatoes and green beans were going to waste. The ground was literally littered with bright red tomatoes with smashed in sides and mold starting to overtake them. It was tragic! So I rescued a few that were ready to fall from the vine and ferried them home in my bag. (I was told the family wouldn't mind since they weren't there to eat them, and the tomatoes and beans would go bad well before they returned from their vacation.)
I haven't decided what to do with the tomatoes yet, but I was thinking perhaps some homemade marinara sauce is in order. I'm pretty sure most of the tomatoes I saved were of the roma variety (my favorite), and the parsley I put in the fridge to dry a month ago is all ready to be used. It's a shame I already boiled and ate the green beans (alongside mac 'n cheese with a hot dog cut up in it because I'm classy) since a quick search online for marinara recipes brought up a recipe for something called "green beans marinara." I am intrigued.
One of the things I wanted to set up on my patio at this apartment was a tomato plant. I think it's a little late in the season now, but I am newly resolved to get something working next year. I think my parsley plant has unfortunately had it, though I continue to coax it back to health and hope that it recovers. I believe we still sell basil plants at work, so maybe I will finally pick one of those up, as well, and I can have an indoor winter herb garden. The last kitty I shared an apartment with disliked the taste of basil, so maybe the cats here will avoid it, too!