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    Tomatoes and their sometimes Mediterranean Influence

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    Jan1
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    Tomatoes and their sometimes Mediterranean Influence

    Post by Jan1 on Fri Jun 17 2016, 13:39


    Tomato:
    Pronounce it: toe-mart-oh

    A member of the nightshade family (along with aubergines, peppers and chillies), tomatoes are in fact a fruit, but their affinity for other savoury ingredients means that they are usually classed as a vegetable.

    Tomatoes originated in western South America, crossed the Atlantic to Spain with the conquistadors in the 16th century, but only finally caught on in northern Europe in the 19th century. Today they're one of the most important ingredients available, and are especially indispensible in Mediterranean cookery. The skin, flesh and seeds can all be eaten, but the green leaves are toxic, so should always be discarded.

    The number of varieties run into the thousands, and they vary in size from the huge beefsteak to tiny cherry tomatoes, but most have a sweet, gently tangy flavour and are good both raw and cooked.

    Availability:
    All year round, with a constantly changing line-up of varieties from season to season. The British tomato season runs from June to October. In winter, you could use more canned tomatoes to save on food miles (the environmental cost of food transportation).

    Tomatoes are easy to grow at home, especially the smaller tumbling varieties.

    Choose the best:
    Go for firm tomatoes with wrinkle-free skins and a noticeable tomato smell. Tomatoes have the best, sweetest flavour if they've been allowed to ripen on the vine before they've been picked but, if you buy under-ripe tomatoes, you can redden them by keeping them in a brown paper bag at room temperature, or on a windowsill.

    The sooner you eat a ripe tomato after it's been picked, the better it will taste, so try to seek out locally grown tomatoes if possible. The leafy tops are a good sign of freshness; they should be perky, rather than wilted. Avoid any tomatoes that show signs of mould.

    The type of tomato you buy depends on what you intend to do with it. Here's a run-down of some of the most common types.

    Beefsteak: these are the biggest tomatoes, and have a meaty texture with a sweet, mellow flavour. They are good for salads, grilling or stuffing.

    Salad (or round): this is the traditional British tomato - it's a good all rounder, but really needs to be ripe to get the best flavour.

    Cherry: small and very sweet, cherry tomatoes are pricier than salad tomatoes but their intense flavour is worth the extra cash. They are good in salads, pasta sauces or roasted.

    Plum: Available as a baby or full-grown tomato, plum tomatoes have an oval shape, with a rich flavour and comparatively few seeds. Good for making sauces and stews.

    Green: there are two types of green tomato. One is unripe, and is quite tart but good for chutneys, or fried. The other is a variety that stays green when ripe, has a tangy flavour and is good in salads or, again, fried.

    Yellow: these ripen to a golden yellow colour, and are good in salads, salsas and chutneys.

    Prepare it:
    Wash, and then leave whole or halve, quarter, slice, chop or dice, as required. If you want to remove the skins before making them into a sauce, cut out the green stalk and core at the top of the tomato, cut a small, shallow cross at its base, then put them in bowl and cover with boiling water. Leave to stand for 30 seconds, then drain. When they are cool enough to handle, pull away the loosened skin. Tomatoes are also available tinned, pulped, purr'eed and juiced.

    Store it:
    Chilling tomatoes mutes their flavour so, unless they are very ripe, they should be stored at room temperature. If you won't be eating ripe tomatoes for a couple of days, put them in the fridge in a perforated bag, but take them out of the fridge for about 30 minutes before eating, so that they can warm up. If you don't use a tin of tomatoes all in one go, transfer the remainder to a non-metal, airtight container and store in the fridge - it will last for around two days.

    Cook it:
    Roast whole (15-20 minutes). Halve and grill (3-4 minutes). Slice and fry (2-3 minutes on each side). Use in sauces, soups, stews, salads.

    Above details taken from here http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/glossary/tomato

    How about this recipe idea?


    Sicilian Baked Red Peppers with cherry vine tomatoes
    recipe idea can be seen here
    http://thelowcarbdiabetic.blogspot.co.uk/2016/02/sicilian-baked-red-peppers.html

    Surely tomatoes are great wherever you live, and if you can grow your own, even better. Why not put them on your shopping (or growing) list soon

    All the best Jan

    N.B. Always remember if you are diabetic, or have any food allergies, or underlying health issues these must always be taken into account, when trying out recipe ideas etc. If you are a diabetic and not sure how certain foods may affect your blood sugars, test is best, i.e. use your meter.
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    Re: Tomatoes and their sometimes Mediterranean Influence

    Post by Jan1 on Mon Jun 20 2016, 11:11


    Vittoria tomato tricolore salad

    If you'd like to enjoy this lovely plateful of food, here are the ingredients you will need:
    Serves Four
    270g Vittoria tomatoes
    1 extra large ripe and ready avocado
    8 slices of buffalo mozzarella
    2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
    6-8 fresh basil leaves

    Here is what you need to do:

    1. Remove the tomatoes from the vine and wash. Drain and cut into halves.
    2. Slice the avocado into long strips and layer on a large serving dish. Arrange the mozzarella slices around the avocado. Scatter the cherry tomato halves over the plate.
    3. To serve, drizzle with olive oil and season. Tear the basil leaves and sprinkle on top of the salad.

    Each serving provides:
    3.1g carbohydrate 0.2g fibre 6.1g protein 23.0 fat

    Also here with relevant links:
    http://thelowcarbdiabetic.blogspot.co.uk/2016/06/vittoria-tomato-tricolore-salad-perfect.html

    All the best Jan
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    Re: Tomatoes and their sometimes Mediterranean Influence

    Post by Jan1 on Mon Jul 04 2016, 11:04

    Roasted Jubilee tomatoes with a fresh herb crust


    These tomatoes, when topped with a herby breadcrumb mixture, make a very nice starter or side dish. If you do not wish to use breadcrumbs, a substitute such as toasted pine nuts could be used instead...

    Ingredients:
    Serves 8
    4 Jubilee tomatoes
    1 slice white bread (or toasted pine nuts if preferred)
    1 tsp fresh thyme leaves, chopped
    1 tbsp fresh parsley leaves, chopped
    1 tsp fresh chives, chopped
    1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
    1 garlic clove, crushed
    4 tsp wholegrain mustard

    Method:
    1. Remove the tomatoes from the vine and wash. Preheat the oven to 200°C/gas mark 6. Toast the bread, then remove the crusts and blitz in a food processor to make crumbs. Add the herbs, oil and garlic and pulse briefly to mix. Season.
    2. Halve the tomatoes and put one layer into a shallow ovenproof dish. Spread the cut surfaces with a little mustard then generously cover with the herb crumb mix. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until the topping is crunchy and lightly browned.

    Each serving provides:
    2.9g carbohydrate 0.3g fibre 0.8g protein 1.7g fat

    Also shown here
    http://thelowcarbdiabetic.blogspot.co.uk/2016/07/roasted-jubilee-tomatoes-with-fresh.html
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    Re: Tomatoes and their sometimes Mediterranean Influence

    Post by Jan1 on Sun Aug 28 2016, 16:13



    Have you seen the nutrients in a tomato?


    taken from article/post here http://thelowcarbdiabetic.blogspot.co.uk/2014/01/featured-food-of-day-tomatoes.html

    All the best Jan
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    Re: Tomatoes and their sometimes Mediterranean Influence

    Post by Jan1 on Mon Aug 29 2016, 12:06

    Warm Pomodorino Tomato Salad with Parma Ham and Mozzarella


    Ingredients:
    Serves 2
    250g Pomodorino tomatoes
    1 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
    Handful pine nuts
    80g mixed salad, e.g watercress, spinach, rocket (arugula)
    125g Buffalo mozzarella ball, torn up
    70g Italian Parma ham
    1 tsp red wine vinegar

    Method:
    1. Wash the tomatoes. Heat 1 tbsp of the oil in a frying pan and fry the pine nuts until they start to go golden – this takes seconds, so watch they don't burn. Add the tomatoes and pan-fry until they're nicely coloured or the skins start to split.
    2. Divide the salad between two plates and top with the mozzarella and Parma ham. Pour over the pine nuts, tomatoes and oil from the pan. Season and serve with an extra drizzle of oil and red wine vinegar

    Sit down ... eat and enjoy!

    Each serving provides:
    5.2g carbohydrate 0.7g fibre 25.3g protein

    All the best Jan
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    Re: Tomatoes and their sometimes Mediterranean Influence

    Post by Jan1 on Fri Feb 24 2017, 22:42

    Turkish Salad


    This recipe suggestion is from Mark's Daily Apple and it's a 'Turkish Salad'... he says, "because it’s loaded with fresh herbs, tomatoes and cucumbers, Turkish shepherd’s salad is often thought of as a summer salad. But go ahead and make it year round. Not only because it’s packed with antioxidants, but also because it’s the perfect cure for a case of the winter’s blues, when you need a taste of summer."

    Ingredients:
    Serves 4 - 6

    16 ounces cherry tomatoes, halved (450 g)
    1 bell pepper, finely chopped
    2 small or 1 large cucumber, chopped
    ½ small red onion, thinly sliced
    1 cup chopped or snipped parsley leaves (240 ml)
    ¼ cup chopped or snipped mint leaves (60 ml)
    1 tablespoon chopped dill (15 ml)
    1 tablespoon pomegranate molasses (15 ml)
    ½ teaspoon lemon juice (2.5 ml)
    1 clove garlic, finely chopped
    ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil (60 ml)
    ¼ teaspoon kosher salt (1.2 ml)
    3 grinds black pepper
    ½ cup crumbled feta (2 ounces/56 g)

    Please find the recipe instructions and more here
    http://www.marksdailyapple.com/turkish-salad/

    All the best Jan

      Current date/time is Mon Sep 25 2017, 23:25