In 1518 a Spanish explorer named Cortex discovered a small, tart, red Mexican fruit. “Tomatl” as it was called by the native Aztecs was not popular initially when it came to Europe, as it wasn’t sweet enough as a fruit. Then an adventurous Spanish chef tried combining it with onion, oil and vinegar. Today the tomato is one of the world’s most popular fruits, though we eat it as a vegetable. The Irish tomato is popular with consumers because of its good quality and flavour. Tomatoes are another good source of vitamin A and are an excellent addition to salads as they are readily available.
- Round tomato
- Beefsteak tomato
- Cherry tomato
- Vine tomato
Primarily North County Dublin and eastern seaboard counties.
Nutritional Value – per 100 grams Tomatoes – Raw
|Vitamin B6||0.14 milligrams|
|Vitamin E||1.22 milligrams|
|Vitamin A||640 micrograms|
|Dietary Fibre||1.0 grams|
|Energy Value K cal||17 73 KJ|
How to Store
Store in cool place at 8°C to 12°C
Just-ripe samples intended for salads should be stored in a cool place and used up reasonably quickly. Tomatoes that are bought when only partially red will continue to ripen if left in a warm spot. If you place a red tomato in amongst some unripe tomatoes and put them in a paper bag in a drawer, the red one will help to bring on the others.
How to Cook
Popular eaten raw, tomatoes can be fried, grilled, baked and used in soup, sauces and stews. Stuffed tomatoes, served raw or cooked, can be used as starters or as a main dish. They can also be bottled, used for jam and when ripe or still green, for chutney. To skin tomatoes, plunge in boiling water for about a minute, cool slightly and the skin comes away easily. To remove seeds, quarter and scoop out the seeds with a teaspoon.