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Published on March 09, 2016

Tomatoes

March 09, 2016

tomatoes

Even though this juicy plant is technically a fruit, it is nutritionally considered a vegetable. A few standout among the hundreds of varieties of tomatoes.

Fruit Types - smaller, like cherry and plum
Beefsteak - hearty and large
Roma - perfect for making tomato sauce

Farm Market/Growing Season: Summer/Autumn

Buying Tips:
Look for red, plump and blemish free. Test how the tomato feels. Pick tomatoes that are heavy and firm enough to resist pressure, but not so hard that it does not react to your touch.

Storage:
Store at room temperature on your counter.

Preparation:
Tomatoes are incredibly versatile and can be baked, broiled, grilled, juiced, pureed, roasted, sautéed, stewed, stuffed, sun-dried and eaten raw.

Key Nutrients:
Tomatoes are rich in the antioxidant lycopene, which may help protect against different types of cancers and lower the risk of heart and eye diseases.

Complementary Flavors:
Artichokes, arugula, basil, black beans, bell peppers, capers, chard, chickpeas, chilies, chives, cilantro, coriander, corn, couscous, cucumbers, cumin, curries, fennel, garlic, ginger, lemon, lentils, marjoram, mint, olive oil, onions, oregano, paprika and parsley.


Simple Tomato Sauce

Unlike many processed sauces… There are no added colors, sugar or artificial flavors.

Ingredients

  • 3 lbs tomatoes, quartered
  • 2 Tbsps olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 medium carrots, finely chopped
  • 4 cloves fresh garlic, chopped
  • Sea salt and black pepper
  • 2 tsps dried oregano or Herbs de Provence
  • Basil – fresh or frozen (8 to 10 torn leaves)

Directions

  1. Heat pan and add oil. 
  2. When hot, add onion with pinch of sea salt. 
  3. Cook until onion starts to soften. 
  4. Add carrots and garlic. 
  5. Cook uncovered until tender. 
  6. Add tomatoes, salt, pepper and crushed, dried herbs. 
  7. Simmer for 1 hour. 
  8. Add basil and, if you choose, a handful of greens like spinach, arugula or kale and cook until wilted. 
  9. Puree until smooth. Refrigerate 1 week or freeze for 2 months.

Optional Method for Roasted Tomato Sauce

  1. Heat oven to 400°.
  2. Toss tomatoes, carrots and onions with 2 Tbsps olive oil, garlic cloves, sea salt and black pepper. 
  3. Spread a single layer in a roasting pan and roast until caramelized - 45 minutes to 1 hour. 
  4. Add herbs and greens if desired. 
  5. Puree until desired consistency 
  6. (thick or thin/sauce or soup), adding water or broth as needed.
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