Tomatoes


General characteristics The tomato is a vegetable of the Solinacee family, from which are consumed the green or red berries. Native of Latin America, initially spread to Europe as an ornamental plant, to become, to this day, the most typical vegetable of Mediterranean cuisine. Variety There are several varieties of tomatoes, which can be mainly selected in shape (ribbed, round, smooth, elongated) and use (salad, sauce). We mention: • San Marzano: elongated shape, ideal for sauces and preserves. • “Insalatari” (for salads): green and round, characterized by ribs, great for salads or to be stuffed. • Camone: green tomato salad, can be found even in winter. • Cherry: round shape, small size and very sweet • Heart of ox: stretched and ribbed, ideal for salads. Use in the kitchen The tomato is widely used raw for salads or cooked for sauces. Ideal with mozzarella for caprese and margherita pizza, it can be cooked, stuffed, grilled, used as a base for soups and also to prepare cocktails (Bloody Mary). For a practical use all the year round, the tomato can be preserved, both in industrial and domestic use, as peeled, puree or chunks. Curiosity The tomato is rich in vitamins, especially A and C. These are concentrated in the gelatinous area around the seeds which could not be eliminated to guarantee all the benefits even if a lot of people discard them for indigestive reasons. A curiosity about the name For long time, the tomato was considered an aphrodisiac food until to be donated to the ladies: across Europe has assumed names related to love: Loveapple, Pomme d’amour, Libesapfel … and in Italy pomo d’oro.