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Organic Tomatoes

Organic tomatoes are biologically the same as the ordinary ones. The difference between the two comes from how they are produced. Organic tomatoes are pesticide and fertilizer free. They are grown on inspected farms and that’s the only way for them to remain certified as organic.

Other than that there’s no difference in how these tomatoes can be used. You may expect them to be a bit smaller and to last a bit less than the ordinary tomatoes.

Trivia

  • Germans called tomatoes the apple of paradise
  • California produces most US tomatoes
  • They are grown in all 50 states

Buying Guide

The tomatoes should feel a bit heavy and be firm to the touch. Their skin should be clean and without blemishes. It’s also important never to buy tomatoes that have been kept in a refrigerated case. Instead you should choose them from an open box.

If the tomatoes a rather ripe, meaning that they tend to change shape to the touch you should use them right away.

Production & Farming in Texas

There are rules as to how organic tomatoes can be produced in order to be called that. The government certifies a farm as organic and that’s done once a year when your greenhouse is inspected and you’re allowed to keep growing them with an “organic” label.

There are also unannounced inspections that are meant to surprise the farmer and check how the greenhouse is doing without the proper preparations. Synthetic pesticides can’t be used in these farms which is what makes them organic in the first place.

The quality of the soil and the amount of sunlight you have are the essential features needed to grow tomatoes. Texas provides both of these and especially so in greenhouses which artificially produces both of those qualities. Tomatoes are rarely grown from seeds and they are usually transplanted.

The most common varieties include:

‘Juliet’ – a cordon cherry plum, with fewer seeds than most. It cooks well
‘Reduna’ – this cordon type has a delicious, classic flavour and is easy to slice
‘Sparta’ – a cordon variety with lots of well-shaped and well-flavoured fruits.

Pesticides

No pesticides can be used to grow organic tomatoes and no artificial fertilizer.

Geography

Tomatoes were originally grown in the Americas and they played a big role in the culture and cuisine of Aztecs. They were then moved to Europe by the settlers and they have taken root in almost every culture of Europe, but especially so in Italy.

These organic tomatoes are grown around the world and they are a more recent innovation. These tomatoes have been grown in this way for decades, but interest has grown for it recently because there’s more concern about what kind of food we’re eating.

Packaging

There are a few ways to pack and move tomatoes. They should be treated little bit more carefully than other because they are more tender. They can be packed in open and closed fruit crates (tomato crates), tubs, cartons, trays and jointed boxes.

It’s therefore important to pack the tomatoes carefully in order not to bruise them in the process.

Enjoying

There are countless ways to eat tomatoes. The simplest one is to use them in a salad and that’s how most people eat them, since they are fresh delicious and easy to make. You could also use them as an addition to common breakfast and scramble them with add to fresh and juicy taste to this dish.

Tomatoes are also great for sauces and they could be made at home meaning that you can be sure that every ingredient is just as healthy and eco-friendly as the tomatoes themselves. It’s a bit of work but it will leave you with quite a lot of sauces you can store for months.

Tomatoes can also be stir fried in addition to other vegetables and more complex dishes as well.

Storage

How tomatoes need to be stored depend on how ripe they are. The riper the tomatoes are; they will last less. If they are unripe you can keep them in a simple paper bag or in a cardboard box. Ripe tomatoes could be kept on a counter and possible covered with a cloth or at least put to be away from the sunlight. Overripe tomatoes should be used right away when they are bought.

Cooking

Organic tomatoes can be used in a variety of ways and you can experiment and be creative with them. This is a recipe for a salad that’s fresh and easy to make.

Place tomatoes, red onion and bocconcini (if using) in shallow bowl.

Drizzle with olive oil and red wine vinegar.

Toss to combine. Season with salt, pepper and fresh herbs to taste.

This is a simple recipe and it’s a great addition to any course.

Nutrition

Tomato is one of the most widely consumed vegetables, connected with reduced risk of chronic diseases and specific types of cancer. Tomato contains important bioactive compounds, including carotenoids, polyphenols, and vitamin C. Carotenoids, such as lycopene, are responsible for the red color, and β-carotene, zeaxanthin, and lutein are provitamin A. Polyphenols, including flavonols and flavonoids, are potent antioxidants. All of these compounds have different benefits for human health.

Carotenoids are a class of isoprenoids that generally consist of eight isoprene units joined together so that the linking of the sub units is reversed at the center of the molecule. They are divided into two groups on the basis of functional groups: carotenes, which contain only the parent hydrocarbon chain without any functional group, such as lycopene, α-carotene, and β-carotene; and xanthophylls, which contain oxygen as the functional group, and include lutein and zeaxanthin.

Flavonoids are a group of polyphenolic secondary metabolites with low molecular weight that have health promoting properties. Flavonoids have been involved in protection against cardiovascular disease, certain types of cancer, age-related diseases, and oxidative stress. Their structures consist of two benzene rings, which are connected by an oxygen-containing pyrene ring. According to the modifications of the central pyrene ring, they can be divided into different structural classes, like flavonols, anthocyanidins, leucoanthocyanidins, catechins, flavanones, flavanols, and flavones. Flavonoids are synthesized as part of the phenyl propanoid pathway on the epidermal cells of tomato fruit and transported into the cuticle of the fruit as it ripens.

When Are Organic Tomatoes in Season in Texas?

To find out when Organic Tomatoes are in season in Texas, please check the seasonal chart below. Why is this important? We are rarely encouraged to think about the physical lengths our food travels before arriving on the market shelves. And all of this travel comes with a hefty environmental cost that is concealed from the consumer’s eye. One of the most salient benefits to eating seasonally is that you are effectively reducing your carbon footprint and supporting a more geographically sustainable food economy. Check other fruit and veg that’s in season in Texas now.

Nutrition

DV%

  • Serving Size: 1 Serving
  • Calories: 26.6 1%
  • Carbs: 5.8g 2%
  • Sugar: 3.9g
  • Fiber: 1.8g 7%
  • Protein: 1.3g 3%
  • Fat: 0.3g 0%
  • Saturated Fat: 0g 0%
  • Trans Fat 0g 0%
  • Cholesterol 0mg 0%
  • Sodium 7.4mg 0%
  • Vitamin C 18.8mg 31%
  • Vitamin A 1233IU 25%
  • Calcium 14.8mg 1%
  • Iron 0.4mg 2%
  • Potassium 351mg 10%
  • Vitamin K 11.7mcg 15%
  • Vitamin E 0.8mg 4%
  • Vitamin B6 0.1mg 6%
  • Folate 22.2mcg 6%
  • Magnesium 16.3mg 4%
  • Phosphorus 35.5mg 4%
  • Manganese 0.2mg 8%
  • Copper 0.1mg 4%
  • Zinc 0.3mg 2%

Seasonality

When are Organic Tomatoes in season in Texas?

  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec

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