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Garden’s Bounty

This weekend, I visited New Vision, the Fredericksburg transitional home for women leaving jail. Youth participating in  Pay It Forward, a new program for children with parents either in jail or who’ve been in jail, planted a community garden for the women living at New Vision.  Many community groups, businesses and churches donated seeds, plants and services to make the garden happen. 
Seeing the seedlings and thinking about all the fresh veggies made me hungry for some crisp zucchini, squash, onions and tomatoes. That night, I tossed them with some fresh lime juice and seasonings and grilled some delicious vegetables. But I started thinking about all the other things you could do with the produce. 
A quick visit to–thanks to our city reporter and foodie Emily Battle for that advice–gave me some more ideas. Here are two recipes that look particularly tasty:

Fresh Tomato Salsa (from Gourmet)




  • 2 pounds vine-ripened red and/or orange tomatoes (about 5 medium)
  • 2 fresh serrano or jalapeño chiles
  • 1/4 medium onion (preferably white)
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro sprigs
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lime juice



Quarter and seed tomatoes. Cut tomatoes into 1/4-inch dice and transfer to a bowl. Wearing rubber gloves, seed and finely chop chiles. Finely chop enough onion to measure 1/4 cup and chop cilantro. Stir chiles, onion, cilantro, and garlic into tomatoes with sugar and lime juice and salt and pepper to taste. Salsa may be made 1 hour ahead and kept at cool room temperature.



Grilled Zucchini and Summer Squash Salad with Basil-Parmesan Dressing (from Bon Appetit)



  • 4 medium-large zucchini, trimmed, halved lengthwise
  • 4 medium-large yellow crookneck squash, trimmed, halved lengthwise
  • 5 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
  • 1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese (about 1 ounce)
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar


Prepare barbecue (medium heat). Place zucchini and crookneck squash on large baking sheet; brush all over with 3 tablespoons oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Grill vegetables until tender and brown, turning occasionally, about 10 minutes. Transfer to plate and cool.

Cut vegetables diagonally into 1-inch-wide pieces. Place in large bowl. Add basil, Parmesan cheese, balsamic vinegar and remaining 2 tablespoons oil and toss to blend. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve.








  • BrentH

    Just having these plants in your garden will be a great help to save more money and budget your family income in everyday. Some people need to figure out how to have fun on budget. Fun on budget funds sounds restrictive, and fun cannot be restricted or rationed. Online payday loans help, but you don’t want to compromise your cash flow when you can figure out how to have fun without cash. Sometimes you need to be more resourceful and try to live a simple and decent life.