Scientific Binomial Name: Solanum lycopersicum Selection, Usage and Storage Information
Selection: Fresh ripe fruits feature beautiful bright-red color and have a rich fruity flavor. In the markets, buy fresh, firm, uniform sized fruits. Avoid those with wrinkle surface, discolored spots, cuts and too soft and mushy.
Usage: Use like regular tomatoes or for cooking in Italian dishes.
They are used extensively in cooking especially in Mediterranean, Greek, Italian, Southeast Asian, and East European cuisine.
Fresh tomato juices as well as its soups are increasingly becoming popular health- drinks all across the world. Organic varieties contain three times the more lycopene than non-organic.
Unripe green tomatoes are used in many similar ways like other raw vegetables to prepare in curries, stews and to make "chutney" in some of the Indian subcontinent states.
Storage: Firm, yellow fruits can be placed in cool, dark place at room temperature for 2- 3 days. However, ripe tomatoes are one of the easily perishable vegetables and should be stored in the refrigerator. Use them while they are fresh to obtain full benefits of vitamins and antioxidants.
Avoid: Avoid product that is too soft, wrinkled or that has broken skin. Tomatoes with a green blush will ripen, but avoid product with blotchy green or brown areas.
Roma tomatoes are available year-round primarily from California, Mexico and Florida. California Romas are available from June through November.
Washington tomatoes are available during August and September.
Allergic reactions to tomatoes may sometimes occur with symptoms like skin and itching eyes, runny nose, gastrointestinal disturbances like pain abdomen, vomiting and diarrhea.