|Old German, Cherokee Purple, Green Zebra, Yellow Pear|
|My little crop, picked just last evening|
|From Top: Cherokee Purple, Old German, Green Zebra|
Salsa is a popular use for fresh tomatoes. The ingredients are pretty straightforward, though there are lots of possibilities for new mixtures. I mixed up a quick batch of fresh salsa the other morning and used it over my fried eggs. I love salsa over eggs, but obviously it is great as a standard dip with chips. Salsa is wonderful over most "Mexican" style dishes, of course. Generally green pepper is used in making a salsa, but I had also bought a few very large jalapeno peppers at the Farmers' Market. These really large jalapenos are also usually much less spicy-hot. Instead of green pepper, I just used the large jalapeno, minced. Obviously, green pepper would work perfectly in this salsa, but with only 3 Roma tomatoes, the one large jalapeno made more than enough of a pepper to tomato ratio. This is what I did for my Salsa Fresca (Fresh Salsa):
Salsa Frescamakes about 1 1/2 cups
3 Roma tomatoes
1 large jalapeno pepper (or 1/2 green pepper), minced finely
1/2 small onion, minced
1 - 2 cloves garlic, minced
chopped cilantro, to taste
salt, to taste
2 tablespoons lime juice, or as needed
Dice the tomatoes, removing the wetter seed sections over the sink if you want a less watery salsa. Place the diced tomatoes in a bowl with the remaining ingredients and mix well. Set aside for a few minutes to allow flavors to meld.
|BLT on homemade bread|
|Green Zebra, top, with 4 Green Grape tomatoes|
|Old German with large red starburst|
Old German is a variety termed heirloom at the local nursery. I grew these a couple of years back and the plant yielded some smaller specimens that were entirely yellow, as well as some that grew very large. The large ones were bright yellow, and at the bottom had a large, red starburst. When cut, the red starburst pattern radiated into the whole tomato. They were most beautiful to behold.
When taking the time to cut and separately taste each of these different varieties of tomatoes, it is obvious they all have very distinct flavors, none of which remotely taste like the bland, red supermarket varieties. I find the Green Zebra have a light, almost citrus-like flavor, while the darker tomatoes like Cherokee Purple or Black of Tula have a deep, smoky-berry like flavor. The red varieties like Mortgage Lifter taste like a red tomato in comparison with these others, but still have most outstanding flavor in comparison to the blandness of supermarket varieties.
In the dead of winter, when the tastebuds have become complacent, these supermarket types of tomato are fine. Once summer hits and the fresh, right-from-the-plant tomatoes are in season, it is time to glory in their magnificence.
My passion is to teach people how to create a harmony of flavors with their cooking, and help pass along my love and joy of food, both simple and exotic, plain or fancy. I continue my journey in ethnic and domestic cuisines, trying new things weekly. I would love to hear from you, to help me continue my journey to explore diverse culinary experiences and hopefully to start you on a journey of your own. Join me at A Harmony of Flavors Website and Marketplace, Tumblr, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.