August 13, 2004

You say tomahto I say tomayto A family of Brandywines, a herd of Green Zebras and the Costoluto Genovese have taken over my kitchen table. Over the years I’ve developed a passion bordering on obsessive for heirloom tomatoes. It’s that time of year when the colors, aromatics and bounty of the farmer’s market is almost too tempting for me to go. The French once called the tomato pomme d'amour or “the apple of love," and in Italian similar sounding to French, pomodoro roughly translates as golden fruit while German translates to "the apple of paradise”. All due to its reputed aphrodisiac properties. And love them all I do. The tomato originates from the Peruvian Andes and Mexico where it was grown by the Incas. The word tomato comes from the Aztec word ‘tomalt’ meaning ‘fleshy fruit’. Christopher Columbus discovered it and brought it back to Europe where it enjoyed great success in the Mediterranean. Peter Hertzmann captures the tomato's history from a French perspective. The recipes and facts go beyond the historical journey from South America to Europe, then back across the ocean to North America. With so many books on tomatoes from gardening, to cooking to folklore it’s a challenge to find the right one. I’ve picked a few that are more on the history, cultural and cookbook side of the fence to help those of us dealing with our current addiction. In Praise of Tomatoes : Tasty Recipes, Garden Secrets, Legends & Lore by Ronni Lundy shows us many ways to love the tomato....


what happens to the hole when the donut is gone?

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