Monday, July 09, 2007

Tiny Tomatoes

I plant three varieties of tiny tomatoes - Sungold, Matt's Wild, and Yellow Pear. In a practical sense, they don't really fit into our lifestyle. They aren't really a canning candidate because their size makes them difficult to peel, though I thought I might try this year. They take more time to pick and cut because they are small so you need more of them to make whatever you are making. Sometimes, usually as I am halving or quartering the thousandth tomato of the day, I ask myself why I go to the trouble when I could take a bigger tomato and dice it with similar results. Yet, I have planted these three varieties for five years and will not be able to resist planting them in years to come. Why?

Taste. Each of these tasty morsels has a enormous burst of flavor that when combined with the other two is almost life changing - maybe not life changing, but certainly memorable. Perhaps taste should rule (and it does), but I don't just grow these jewels for their taste. I grow them for . . .

Beauty. Yes, I am a slave to appearance in the kitchen. I love the way the tomatoes look when tossed together in a bowl. The orange, yellow, and red combined make a statement visually. Add the subtle size differences and the pear shape of the Yellow Pear, throw in a little green and white, and WOW! The first picture shows just tomatoes. The second is of a tomato salad we make often. The third picture is the salsa I make nearly every day for my . . .

Husband. Honestly, I don't pamper my husband. In fact, he is a low maintenance part of our household, but in the summer he needs refueling with tons of fresh salsa. When the first of the tiny tomatoes arrives he starts asking, no begging, for salsa. The salsa is technically pico de gallo with my combination of tiny tomatoes cut into bite size pieces, chopped onion, finely chopped jalapeno peppers, fresh cilantro, a squeeze of lime, and a dash of coarse salt. The proportions are personal preference and I don't measure. I eye it, then taste it. If you are proportionally challenged, email and I will measure for you tonight.

4 comments:

ZBTzahBTzoo said...

Absolutely beautiful! I'd use them for caprese, I think, and maybe black bean & corn salsa ...

Alas, my tomatoes flowered just fine -- loads of flowers. I should have the very beginnings of fruit at this point, but I don't, and I've babied those tomato plants, truly, I have!

I have seen two bees all summer, and lots of wasps and several daubers and a few hornets. Yesterday, I actually rescued a pollen-laden bee from drowning in the splash pool I have for GBabyZ. I scooped her out with my bare hands and placed her on a leaf to dry off.

I'm going to keep working on my bee karma and try tomatoes again next year.

Meanwhile, I'm living vicariously through you!

Susan said...

Beautiful and I could just taste them.

Angela,MotherCrone said...

I totally get it. Taste and appearance...really, who needs more than that? These are gorgeous, and I wrote the names in my garden journal for next year! I have been the same slave to colored peppers. For years I start my own heirloom seeds for the most flavorful red, yellow, orange, and purple peppers. I have a tiny garden, and usually end up only able to plant three of each, and give the rest away. Why? Because my confetti pepper relish recipe is the most beautiful and tasty ever made. (I can't even explain the loss I feel this year as the plants molded over in our basement flood.)

Kate in NJ said...

Beautiful! Our tomatoes are not ripe yet, but they are getting closer!
My DH can't resist growing the tiny ones either!