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Re: Ruskin Tomato Festival


Still are farms in LA Country. My daughter went to Claremont McKenna and
just down from the colleges were several fields where produce was grown.


-----Original Message-----
>From: Daryl <pulis@mindspring.com>
>Sent: May 6, 2007 2:34 PM
>To: gardenchat@hort.net
>Subject: Re: [CHAT] Ruskin Tomato Festival
>
>And thanks for *that great story! I didn't know there were Hoover Holidays 
>at the PO. My father-in-law was a carrier, then  Assistant Postmaster, but 
>that was years later, after he came back from WWII.
>
>I can't imagine a farm anywhere in LA county. Of course, I can't imagine 
>that I look out of my office window and see a C-store/gas station where I 
>once saw cows. :-(      I'm curious. I know that a lot of Dutchmen, 
>including some of my peripheral cousins, settled in California because of 
>the wonderful farm land. Where did your family come from and how did they 
>happen to settle there?
>
>It must have been fascinating to hear the stories the guests told. So many 
>of them were intelligent, well-educated and determined but forced from home 
>by incredible circumstances.  Combine that with what they had to learn to 
>survive and there must be some wonderful tales.
>
>I'm really glad that my Dad is still alive, and that his memory is still 
>sharp at 93. In recent years I've taken him several times to visit his home 
>town in Wisconsin. On one trip, an elderly man sat next to us at the Holland 
>Days festival, watched us with a puzzled expression for awhile, before 
>asking my father's name. Then he  said that Dad had been his boss some 70 
>years earlier! Dad was crew boss at the canning factory before he was 18, 
>earning cash money for college and to help support the family.  They 
>sometimes worked 20 hours per day, napping on the cans or the pallets of 
>labels between batches.
>
>Hard times built character, faith and determination. And there was a 
>generosity there that seems to be lacking today. I don't think that anyone 
>ever went hungry from either set of grandparents. As with your mother, there 
>was always something shared.
>
>d
>
>
>----- Original Message ----- 
>From: "james singer" <islandjim1@verizon.net>
>To: <gardenchat@hort.net>
>Sent: Sunday, May 06, 2007 1:54 PM
>Subject: Re: [CHAT] Ruskin Tomato Festival
>
>
>> Great story, Daryl. Thanks.
>>
>> My father was one of the lucky ones--he'd gone to work for the post office 
>> in 1928. He'd been a freelance journalist but had to have a steady job 
>> before my mother's parents would allow her to marry him. So he had a 
>> steady job, albeit with Hoover Holidays, throughout the Depression. But, 
>> because our farm was on Main Street in LA County--the main thoroughfare 
>> between the LA Civic Center and San Pedro harbor, my mother set up a kind 
>> of soup kitchen for the hundreds of hobos traveling either to the city or 
>> to the harbor looking for work. Those were truly terrible times. Yet our 
>> dinner table was always an interesting place, with "guests" from virtually 
>> every state with stories about their home places and what they'd seen and 
>> experienced on the road.
>>
>>
>> On May 6, 2007, at 1:07 PM, Daryl wrote:
>>
>>> I think a lot of childhood favorites grew out of our parent's and 
>>> grandparents' experience, especially if they grew up in the Depression or 
>>> before. They were either comfort foods or special treats created out of 
>>> necessity.
>>>
>>> Noodles were easy and cheap. Flour and water, maybe an egg if you had 
>>> chickens. Potatoes were available in huge bags for a few cents. Meat was 
>>> expensive, hard to get and had to go a long way. Hence the noodle and 
>>> potato thing, with a tiny amount of beef and a lot of gravy.
>>>
>>> For vitamins, there was cabbage. It could be grown in almost any back 
>>> yard or purchased inexpensively in season and turned into sauerkraut  or 
>>> boiled and chopped with noodles or potatoes and a little sausage. I 
>>> remember years later visiting the old neighborhood. I could still smell 
>>> the ghosts of the boiled cabbage -but cabbage was all that stood between 
>>> scurvy and health for some.
>>>
>>> For those in the south, tomatoes were easy to grow and produced early. 
>>> Sliced green, floured and fried with a bit of bacon grease early in the 
>>> season. Later, sliced tomatoes on bread with a little salt and pepper 
>>> provided nourishment (remember the bread back then had more protein and 
>>> vitamins than the doughy goo common today). When "loaf bread," as they 
>>> call it locally, became available, there was a switch to the sliced white 
>>> bread, with mayo added to help keep the bread intact. The tomato juice 
>>> would otherwise cause it to disintegrate.
>>>
>>> My parents were better off than some. My Dad grew up on a dairy farm, and 
>>> even though they had to work very, very hard, there was always food. Not 
>>> only did they grow crops for the local canning factory, they had an 
>>> orchard, berry patch and a large vegetable garden. I remember long hours 
>>> picking berries, making sauerkraut and applesauce, and everyone pitching 
>>> in to can almost anything imaginable. And I remember that there was 
>>> always plenty of food on the table, no matter who stopped by at 
>>> dinnertime. There was always another jar to open or potato to cook.
>>>
>>> My mother's father owned a butcher shop, later a grocery store in 
>>> Chicago. Even when they lost all of his investment property when people 
>>> couldn't pay the rent,  he still had ties to wholesale purchases. I 
>>> remember my mother telling me about my grandmother who became so sick and 
>>> tired  of potatoes one year that she told my grandfather that the 
>>> potatoes had all spoiled. (Fortunately Grandma was also an excellent 
>>> cook, and made noodles and bread that were of excellent quality.) In 
>>> reality, she had dumped the potatoes behind the garage. Imagine her 
>>> surprise when there were hundreds of potato sprouts the next spring! 
>>> It's a good thing they really loved one another...
>>>
>>> d
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> ----- Original Message ----- From: "Kitty" <kmrsy@comcast.net>
>>> To: <gardenchat@hort.net>
>>> Sent: Sunday, May 06, 2007 11:56 AM
>>> Subject: Re: [CHAT] Ruskin Tomato Festival
>>>
>>>
>>>> I know we've visited this subject b4, but it's kind of interesting how 
>>>> we all grew up with certain foods and not others.  To me, a sandwich 
>>>> requires some sort of protein.  However, I'd never heard of an egg 
>>>> sandwich until I was an adult.  To me sandwich protein was meat, cheese, 
>>>> or peanut butter.
>>>>
>>>> And last night my sister and I were talking about the difference we 
>>>> noticed in foods when we moved from Chicago to Ft. Wayne when I was 10. 
>>>> We'd never seen noodles b4 and couldn't quite grasp why a favorite dish 
>>>> was mashed potatoes, topped with noodles, topped with beef and gravy. 
>>>> That's a lot of starch.
>>>>
>>>> I understand Elvis liked peanutbutter and banan sandwiches, but just 
>>>> banas on bread seems strange.
>>>> Kitty
>>>> neIN, Zone 5
>>>> ----- Original Message ----- From: "Andrea Hodges" <andreah@hargray.com>
>>>> To: <gardenchat@hort.net>
>>>> Sent: Sunday, May 06, 2007 9:31 AM
>>>> Subject: Re: [CHAT] Ruskin Tomato Festival
>>>>
>>>>
>>>>> Wow Kitty, my Dad grew up on tomato sandwiches and loves them to this 
>>>>> day. Two slices of bread, mayo, salt and pepper and a big slice of 
>>>>> tomato. I personally would rather just slice it, salt it and eat it all 
>>>>> by itself! LOL! Oh, and we also ate banana sandwiches, which I do love, 
>>>>> same way minus the salt and pepper.
>>>>> A
>>>>> ----- Original Message ----- From: "Kitty" <kmrsy@comcast.net>
>>>>> To: <gardenchat@hort.net>
>>>>> Sent: Saturday, May 05, 2007 6:11 PM
>>>>> Subject: Re: [CHAT] Ruskin Tomato Festival
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>> Oh yummy!  I'd never have thought of a tomato sandwich, but you make 
>>>>>> it sound sooooooooo good!
>>>>>> Kitty
>>>>>> neIN, Zone 5
>>>>>> ----- Original Message ----- From: "james singer" 
>>>>>> <islandjim1@verizon.net>
>>>>>> To: "Garden Chat" <gardenchat@hort.net>
>>>>>> Sent: Saturday, May 05, 2007 3:01 PM
>>>>>> Subject: [CHAT] Ruskin Tomato Festival
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>>>> I love these kinds of hokey things. A tomato festival! But there were 
>>>>>>> Ms Fatma and I--two old duffs wandering around in the 85+ degree sun 
>>>>>>> eating tomatoes and basil marinated in balsamic vinegar, fried green 
>>>>>>> tomatoes, a local supermarket's in-store baked chocolate chip cookies 
>>>>>>> [all at no cost except, perhaps, to our arteries] and talking to 4H 
>>>>>>> kids about the plants [tomatoes, naturally, peppers, and sunflowers] 
>>>>>>> they were selling. They had a large sign that read "Peppers are 
>>>>>>> perennials in Ruskin!" There was a bluegrass band that sounded more 
>>>>>>> like zydeco than Bill Monroe, but it didn't seem to matter. But I 
>>>>>>> guess what really impressed me was a local farm selling tomato 
>>>>>>> sandwiches--two slices of white bread, two thick slices of tomato, 
>>>>>>> two dollars. The line of people waiting to buy one of these simple 
>>>>>>> constructions was far longer than the lines for the corn dogs and 
>>>>>>> funnel cakes and all that other ghastly carny food combined. We ended 
>>>>>>> up buying three tomatoes--2-1/4 pounds--for salads next week.
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> Island Jim
>>>>>>> Southwest Florida
>>>>>>> 27.1 N, 82.4 W
>>>>>>> Hardiness Zone 10
>>>>>>> Heat Zone 10
>>>>>>> Sunset Zone 25
>>>>>>> Minimum 30 F [-1 C]
>>>>>>> Maximum 100 F [38 C]
>>>
>>> ---------------------------------------------------------------------
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>>> message text UNSUBSCRIBE GARDENCHAT
>>>
>>>
>> Island Jim
>> Southwest Florida
>> 27.1 N, 82.4 W
>> Hardiness Zone 10
>> Heat Zone 10
>> Sunset Zone 25
>> Minimum 30 F [-1 C]
>> Maximum 100 F [38 C]
>>
>> ---------------------------------------------------------------------
>> To sign-off this list, send email to majordomo@hort.net with the
>> message text UNSUBSCRIBE GARDENCHAT
>
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