In praise of the tomato

by Admin Saturday, March 10, 2012 6:22 PM

This will be a tear-free post. That’s probably fairly obvious from the headline. But after the week we’ve all had I thought it was important to say that we should all be fine. I’ll be fine writing; you’ll be fine reading. Moving on.

Tonight I’m celebrating the tomato, in case you couldn’t decipher that from the title. That wondrous fruit we know as red and ripe and sumptuous and tangy is actually a vegetable. I’m celebrating it because I’m using it to make tomato sauce for pasta, two of my favorite things to eat. Lush, ripe tomatoes crushed and pureed, and cooked with sautéed mushrooms, onions and sliced garlic, poured over pasta and smothered in cheese, accompanied by a lovely red wine. It doesn’t suck.

Tomato is actually Lycopersicon esculentum, Latin for wolfpeach. Peach because it’s round and luscious; wolf because it was once considered hazardous, even poisonous. The English word for tomato actually comes from the Spanish word tomate which came from the Nahuatl, or Aztec, tomatl. It first appeared in print in 1595 and has been broadcasting itself ever since. It is native to western South America and Central America. In fact, it was Cortez who first discovered tomatoes growing in Montezuma’s gardens in 1519 and brought the seeds back to Europe so they could be planted and cultivated as ornamental curiosities. They were absolutely not to be eaten.

Yeah. About that.

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Comments (1) -

3/10/2012 6:25:57 PM #

this is a test, only a test

Lorin Michel United States

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