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Let’s Talk Tomatoes

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Tasty Kitchen Blog: Let's Talk Tomatoes!

We’ve been seeing more than a few summer salads here at Tasty Kitchen lately, with good reason. These warmer months, the abundance and quality of produce in the market is almost enough to make me forget about meat. Much of it is local and allowed to ripen a bit more on the vine or branch or tree, and the berries are sweeter, the lettuce crisper, and the beans … snappier. But if there’s one fruit (masquerading as a veggie) that truly represents summer around these parts, it’s the tomato. I see tomatoes growing in people’s gardens, in pots or in raised beds, and I see them in bin after bin at the local market. They come in every color, size, and shape, and I have yet to meet one I didn’t like.

So today’s Kitchen Talk topic is all about the tomato. Tell us:

What are your favorite tips when it comes to tomatoes?

It can be about choosing tomatoes, your favorite variety of tomatoes, growing tomatoes, cooking tomatoes, canning tomatoes, the most delicious or even unusual dish you’ve had with tomatoes … as long as it features the tomato, we want to hear it!

In the summertime, I just like eating tomatoes plain. Give me a bowl full of sweet cherry tomatoes (currently, the Sun Gold variety is my favorite) with a sprinkling of salt, and I’m a happy camper. I also love oven-roasted tomatoes in sandwiches, pizza, and pasta. And there’s a reason the BLT is my favorite sandwich, and—surprise!—it’s not because of the bacon. (Not the lettuce either, in case you were wondering.)

But we want to hear from you! We know you love your tomatoes too, because there are over 6,600 recipes here in Tasty Kitchen that use tomatoes. So come share your favorite tomato tips and dishes with us below!

 

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Hannah | The CanonRebel on 9.3.2014

Tomatoes are sooo versatile, and I like to use them in sauces, and salads, but another great way to eat cherry tomatoes (or grape tomatoes) is tossed with 1/4 cup of red wine vinegar and 1 tbsp of sugar.

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kay43026 on 8.17.2014

The BEST way to eat a fresh, vine ripened, tomato is in a BLT. Pair it with corn on the cob & a cantaloupe and my perfect summer meal is complete

Nancy on 8.16.2014

When the garden tomatoes are at their peek, my favorite way to preserve is to make roasted tomato sauce and freeze for winter serving over pasta.

Joan in VA on 8.15.2014

I love tomatoes … any shape, any color, any way you want to fix them. But, it wasn’t always this way. When I was about 10, my mother couldn’t get me to eat a tomato (except the ones in spaghetti sauce). One day, I came home from having lunch at a friend’s house absolutely raving about the wonderful sandwich I had just eaten. Yeah, you guessed it … a tomato and lettuce with mayonnaise on white bread. My mother just shook her head and tried to not laugh in my face.

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Cathey on 8.14.2014

Grow them, if you can’t buy fresh local farm grown. Nothing beats a farm or garden tomato. Tomato with fresh mozzarella, fresh basil and really good balsamic and EVOO, yum. That was our salad side tonight.

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Nancy @ Coupon Clipping Cook on 8.14.2014

My favorite tip about tomatoes is to grow then if you can. It’s easy, fun and can save a lot of money especially if you have a bumper crop.

Kim M on 8.14.2014

My tomato salad is a couple of seeded and diced tomatoes (any variety of red tomatoes) garlic salt, onion powder, dill and olive oil all to taste. I usually make this before I make the rest of the meal so it has time to get all happy and yummy! My husband loves it and it couldn’t be easier!

Patty Paulsen on 8.14.2014

Here’s a nifty trick for halving cherry or grape tomatoes. Place a handful of tomatoes on a salad plate, invert another salad plate on top, grab a serrated knife (a bread knife), and holding the top plate gently in place, run the knfe through the opening between the plates. GENIUS! Go here for a picture tutorial: http://www.thehobbyroomdiaries.com/2012/07/technique-of-week-halving-cherry.html

Beth B on 8.14.2014

We love Bradley tomatoes and our favorite way to eat them is to dice, add chopped basil, fresh mozzarella or feta, and good quality aged balsamic vinegar. I serve this as a side dish nearly every night when the Bradleys come in.
Also, I’ve been making fresh pesto (using Skinnytaste’s recipe with only a small amount of olive oil). A pesto tip: after washing fresh-picked basil, don’t worry about drying leaves as the small amount of water and olive oil add enough moisture to the pesto. A favorite is pesto on ciabatta, topped with cherry tomatoes. What a delicious appetizer!

Sandi W. on 8.13.2014

Roma tomatoes are my favourite go to for homemade salsa! I’m always being asked when I’m making the next batch. :D

Linda F on 8.13.2014

My husband’s favorite summer salad using tomatoes is diced tomatoes, cucumbers, and onion mixed into cottage cheese then topped with bottled Green Goddess dressing. When canning tomatoes I have started adding a little lemon juice as a lot of tomatoes aren’t as acidic as they once were.

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Patricia @ ButterYum on 8.13.2014

We love summer tomatoes and can’t seem to get enough of them. Here are a few tomato tips I’ve learned through the years; 1) when picking tomatoes, choose ones that still have the stems attached – that stem keeps them fresh for a longer period of time than tomatoes that have had the stems removed. 2) when serving fresh sliced tomatoes, always sprinkle with a little salt. 3) never store whole fresh tomatoes in the refrigerator.

Marty on 8.13.2014

Our fav is the plain ole mater sandwich. We always have a few bisicuts left over from breakfast, and they get toasted, oiled, buttered, or slader with mayo for dinner.

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Arlyne Michelle on 8.13.2014

Red and yellow cherry tomatoes, mini-mozzarella balls, fresh basil tossed in a balsamic/oil dressing.

Gazpacho made with ripe, juicy tomatoes, cucumbers/peppers from the garden and fresh basil.

Fresh tomatoes tossed in pasta.

Tomatoes, cucumbers and fresh basil in cottage cheese.

Slow roasted roma tomatoes – tastes like tomato candy.

At the end of season, harvest all the green tomatoes for green tomato taco sauce to can for winter use.

Gidget on 8.13.2014

Tomatoes are so easy to dry and then use all winter in soups and sauces!

DebbieK on 8.13.2014

In using fresh tomatoes, the standards at our house are BLTs and bruschetta in addition to just slicing and eating or adding to salads. In terms of canning ripe tomatoes I can salsa, tomato sauce, and tomato basil soup. I also make and freeze a chili soup base with my garden tomatoes and peppes. I then make the green tomatoes and end of the garden vegetables into a green tomato relish I use in place of pickle relish in all my recipes like potato salad and ham salad.

Katy on 8.13.2014

I only have two little tomato plants (Early Girls variety). Since two plants isn’t quite enough to jar my famous spaghetti sauce, I’ve taken to using them to make pico de gallo each time. A few diced tomatoes, a little white onion, some jalepeno, cilantro, and lime juice is one of the easiest recipes ever and pleases just about everyone.

slammie on 8.13.2014

I subscribe to my local nursery’s email. They sent out a tip that after the tomatoes get going (don’t remember exactly which point – LOL) to cut off about a foot of the bottom lower leaves to prevent disease. Course by the time I got the email my tomatoes were already starting to turn red and the lower leaves were starting to yellow. Will have to remember for next year!

Leann on 8.13.2014

I have never heard of anything like Marsh’s “recipe” using green tomatoes to make a sauce for enchilladas. That is absolutely brilliant! Thank you so much for sharing that little tip!

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C. L. ( Cheryl ) "Cheffie Cooks" Wiser on 8.13.2014

I have tomatoes in my garden currently still ripening. I have made so many recipes from them and still am. I have canned homemade tomato/marinara sauce. My favorite sandwich using (my homegrown) tomatoes is a very simple sandwich using beefsteak tomatoes, cutting a huge thick slice, using multi-grain bread, mayonnaise, salt and pepper, cut in half. It is the simple things in life really. I also love Caprese Salads as many people do, they are so easy to prepare. Even in sandy Florida we can grow gardens!!! Happy Day to everyone! Cheryl “Cheffie Cooks” Wiser.

Mary Lou on 8.13.2014

My favorite thing to do as a side dish with either lunch or dinner is to slice tomatoes and drizzle with virgin olive oil and sprinkle wine vinegar, salt, and fresh ground pepper. And if I have fresh baby cucumbers, slice and add them and toss together for my favorite salad ever!

Marsha Siperek on 8.13.2014

When the end of the growing season comes take all the green tomatoes left and simmer in chicken broth with garlic, onions and jalapenos for 1 hours then puree in the food processor and freeze for a yummy enchilada sauce for chicken enchiladas.