Monday, September 05, 2011

Ketchup or Catsup?

The convenience store kitty-korner from our house has "free tomatoes" on their counter.  A farmer with an over-abundance brought 'em to town to give away to the locals.  There's an avalanche of tomatoes this year, and everybody we talk to is either busy canning spicy salsas, spaghetti sauce, tomato juice, or homemade ketchup.

Mom used to make the best homemade ketchup in the world, and it's the one recipe she didn't leave behind for me.  That's cuz she never would have imagined me getting that domestic. Others in my family have it, so I've asked that they share it with me.  There are certain tastes, flavors, and aromas from Mom's kitchen that stay with us always.   Mom's ketchup is one.

My family is crazy about ketchup, homemade or store bought.  When we gather for meals, the first thing we set on the table is a big bottle of ketchup. 

Speaking of garden stuff, Mother Nature has cleverly placed a yellow flower and hung a pear-shaped decoration on our smokehouse in the backyard.  Yup, a butternut squash dangles from its vine, adding a simple and sweet charm to an otherwise ever-so-humble-looking structure.

Small-town life has its occasional petty annoyances, but there's nothing like free tomatoes and one smokehouse squash to keep us grounded and thankful for what we have.