At the moment my garden is filled with these beautiful ruby-red little organic gems all over – vine ripened rosa tomatoes! They are sweet and delicious and taste nothing like those shop bought tomatoes. They have a wonderful aroma and their heartiness can quickly fill the whole garden with their natural goodness that tells you, you are onto something really good here.
Rich in vitamin C, anti-oxidants and that all important lycopene. Yes, being in my forties I am seriously considering the health benefits of the foods that I put into my body and studies have shown that lycopene seriously reduce the risk of prostate cancer. Lycopene is the major red carotenoid pigment found in tomatoes. Added benefits include also lowering the your risk for heart disease and colon disease. So add a healthy dose of these beautiful gems to your diet!
I love them as they make a really good snack food when I am busy in my garden. I would just cut a few stems off, wash them and eat them there and then, they refresh and replenish energy levels quickly and above all I can feel their goodness as they enter my body! And if you think the leaves look unhealthy in the picture, this is what organic food look like. I stopped using pesticides and harmful artificial fertiliser about thirteen years ago and allow everything to control each other. Over the years I have been blessed with wonderful veggies and one thing I have learned so far is that all the pests will help themselves to the bottom fruits and leaves and the top ones they’ll leave for you to enjoy. That way everybody shares in the bounty of Mother Nature. Try it, it is worthwhile!
Apart from eating them fresh, I like to add them to my diet in other forms as well. One of my favourite and very naughty breakfasts is to go out early in the morning and pick a few stems. In a pan I lightly fry some sliced chorizo, no oil, they will soon ooze their own fragrant laden oil in the pan. Add a few washed stems of rosa tomatoes and take the chorizo out of the pan once they are crispy or to your liking. Remove the tomatoes and add a few slices of ciabatta and toast them in the remaining oil in a hot pan. Once golden on both sides, remove and enjoy with the chorizo and tomatoes. Crush the tomatoes onto the toast, they will be oozing all their juices over the bread and topped with a few slices of chorizo it is nothing short of a culinary miracle in your mouth!
If you are on the Pretoria Boeremark (farmer’s market) why not drop into our stall for a tub of vine ripened tomato goodness. We have so much of these little gems that I have decided to share them with you in the form of Tomato Confit. Now, before my Afrikaans speaking clients think I am talking about “konfyt” (which is sweet jam), the french word confit means cooked or baked in oil. We wash and peel our tomatoes, drizzle them with a little sugar, balsamic vinegar, olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic and a few fresh herbs and then slow bake it in the oven until they are soft and full of all the flavours of the herbs. They are versatile and you can enjoy them as is or serve with a white fish such as hake, monk fish or kingklip or try it with a piece of fillet. When I serve it with fillet I add some sundried olives, also available from Taste Café, it accompanies your fillet beautifully.
Fancy something more upmarket to impress your friends? Try our Rosa Tomato Tart Tatin, it is a celebration of goodness and a lovely starter! Click here for the recipe.