Testing your tomatoes

We have all heard stories about how some fruit and vegetables are being gathered when they are green, put in warehouses and gassed to make them look ripe. Worse, some of them are being genetically engineered. Since there is no clear labeling standards, when we go to the store we want to do the right thing, but we really have no idea how to find good quality product. Well, let me share with you what I know about tomatoes.

I grew up in Ukraine and such things as genetically engineered or gassed veggies were not part of the common practice. Most everyone grows their own veggies in rural Ukraine and I happened to have family that does precisely that. So having been around farms and growers, I would go and pick everything they grow right off the wine.

When it comes to tomatoes, my favorite vegetable, it is the sweetest when picked ripened right off the wine. With every bite, bursts of sweet juice fill your mouth and rivers of it drip down your hand. That’s what I call the perfect tomato! They ripe some time in the middle of summer and could last until late summer.

The best places to find them in USA are the farmer’s markets. Some times, even Lucky’s or Safeway would put “good ones” on their shelves. But beware of look-alikes.

Do a simple test. Drop one and see if it cracks. If it does, get it. If not, leave it on the shelf.

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Photo: This tomato is ripe! This one sure passed the test.

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