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Produce Facts: Heirloom Tomatoes

Sep 15, 2016

heirloom tomato slices












Availability/Origin
Depending on variety, heirlooms can be a year-round item coming from North America and/or Mexico.

Appearance/Flavor
Due to their genetics, heirlooms are actually sweeter than other tomatoes. You will notice that they do not have the typical red color associated with tomatoes. In fact, they have a wide variety of colors from brown to multi-color (green, red and yellow).

Varieties

  • Commercial - Varieties before 1940 or that have been around more than 50 years.
  • Family - As the name ‘heirloom’ indicates they are passed down from generation to generation.
  • Created - Occur from crossing an heirloom with another tomato variety or another heirloom. They are crossed and bred until the desired characteristics are achieved, and this can be a decade long process.
  • Mystery - Byproduct of different heirlooms varieties that naturally cross-pollinate one another.
Storage
  • Room temperature, never refrigerate or store in bags. Keep out of direct sunlight. They can be frozen after dicing.
Ways to enjoy
  • Pastas, sandwiches, salads, sauces and soups. Remember to wash and core prior to use.
History
It is actually hard to determine - refer to the four types of heirlooms above to gain a better understanding.

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