Preparation, uses, and tips
Tomatoes should be rinsed thoroughly before preparation. If they are being used to make
tomato sauce for spaghetti or other dishes, they should be peeled and seeded. To peel a
tomato, drop it into boiling water for one to two minutes. Then remove and dunk briefly in a
bowl of ice water. Cut out a small cone around the stem end and slip off the skin. To seed a
tomato, cut it in half horizontally and squeeze the seeds out.
Raw fresh tomatoes are most often sliced onto sandwiches or eaten in salads. They can also
be cooked with herbs, onions, and garlic to make homemade spaghetti sauce. Raw tomatoes
can be diced and added to soups or stews. Halved tomatoes can also be broiled. Place them on a
baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil, and
broil until the tops are lightly browned, about five minutes. Tomatoes make an attractive dish
when stuffed with crabmeat or with
sautéed vegetables, such as spinach and
mushrooms, and baked.
Unripe, green tomatoes are often dipped in cornmeal and fried.
Canned tomatoes can be added to soups, stews, or bean dishes, or used to make spaghetti
sauce. Combined with vegetable broth, they make a good base for many kinds of soups. Canned
tomatoes can be puréed with soft tofu and
then thinned with milk, soy milk, or broth, flavored with herbs, and heated to
make a fast cream of tomato soup. Canned tomato sauce can also be used in curry dishes and to
Never add canned tomatoes to uncooked beans
or grains, since they toughen the skins of
these foods, making it difficult to cook them to a tender stage.
Unless they are packed in oil, dried tomatoes (sometimes called sun-dried tomatoes) must
first be slightly rehydrated by allowing them to soak in hot water. Dried tomatoes can be
chopped and tossed with pasta or vegetable
dishes. They can also be puréed with olive oil, toasted pine nuts, and basil to make tomato pesto.
There are hundreds of varieties of tomatoes, including large “beefsteak” types
that are especially good for salads and for slicing on sandwiches; Italian plum tomatoes,
called Roma tomatoes, which are ideal for cooked dishes like tomato sauce; and small, sweet
cherry tomatoes. While red tomatoes are most common, these vegetables can also be yellow,
green, pink, or orange.
Tomatoes are available fresh, and in a variety of canned products, such as stewed tomatoes,
whole tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato purée, and diced tomatoes. Tomatoes can also be
dried and are sometimes packed in oil this way. Tomatoes are often juiced and can be
concentrated to produce tomato paste.
Tomato, 1 medium whole (raw, ripe)
Total Fat: 0.406g
*Excellent source of: Vitamin C (23.5mg)
*Good source of: Vitamin A (766 IU)
*Foods that are an “excellent source” of a particular
nutrient provide 20% or more of the Recommended Daily Value. Foods that are a “good
source” of a particular nutrient provide between 10 and 20% of the Recommended Daily