Finding an outdoor tomato variety that truly resists blight in the UK is like searching for gold! This year, I struck treasure when I took Charles Dowding's advice (one of the first proponents of the 'no dig' approach) and purchased 'Primabella' seeds from Thomson & Morgan. They are pricey; only 5 seeds for £2.99 but I have been delighted with the results. Here we are on 21 Sept and I can report that my outdoor plants are clear of any mildew and laden with ripening fruit; they can continue until October according to the packet.
They were quite temperamental at the germination stage, with only 4 of the 5 seeds popping up and for the next month or so they were quite weak in comparison to other varieties growing in the greenhouse. Once of a good size though, I planted them out in May and there they have been ever since, producing delicious, healthy, shiny fruits. I promise you I have not polished them for this photo.
This is a recipe that can be ladled on top of pasta, or served as a salad starter. I decided to add some anchovies at the end and serve on top of runner beans with some grilled haloumi. Simple but so tasty.
Serves 2 2 baked red peppers - you can either buy them from a jar ( as I do) or go through the process of baking them in the oven and removing the skin. Chop into strips. olive oil 1½ tbsp 200g cherry or baby plum tomatoes or the wonderful 'Primabella'. 1 fresh chilli chopped, I leave the seeds in, you may want it milder 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped ½ tsp sugar salt boiled lemon 1 small (see my recipe intro) or ½ large one (optional)
To serve Basil a small handful, leaves chopped/torn
10 Anchovies (optional)
First, boil your lemon in water for 30 mins. Allow to cool. You will be stirring this into your salad so any left over save in the fridge for another occasion. Chop into small pieces. Discard pips but try to keep juice and flesh intact.
Cook the tomatoes and chilli over a low to medium heat in a frying pan for 10 mins in the olive oil. Turn gently.
Next add the garlic, sugar and salt. Stir.
Add the peppers & lemon. Stir for a minute or so to heat through,
then it's ready. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Garnish with basil
& 10 anchovies (optional)