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The Love Apple

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Heirloom Tomato Carmel Tomato Festival 


Nothing says Summer like a vine ripened heirloom tomato.  In the Spring when the weather is beginning to warm up I start dreaming of tomatoes-juicy flavourful  heirloom tomatoes from my garden!

What is the difference in an heirloom tomato and the typical small hard tomatoes you buy at the market with signs saying “tomatoes”?  You know what  I am talking about those cardboard mealy textured ones with bitter seeds you see piled up at the market. You buy them to put in salads knowing they may look like a tomato, but they don’t taste like a tomato.  That is why your kids pick them out of the salads.  ICK! 

 When I say TOMATOES what I am talking about is one of those gorgeous “ugly” shaped  tomatoes.  You know the ones that grandma used to grow-huge but never perfect.  The kind of tomato that when you slice it - one slice covers a piece of bread, the ones that when you bite into them you have  juice running down your chin!  Yes those are the ones that taste of summer. 

I mean they taste like tomatoes should taste. To me Summer is a Bacon, Tomato, Avocado, mayo sandwich on two slices San Francisco sour dough bread lightly toasted.  Now we’re talking yum-factor.  These are so messy to eat-oh yes-juice running down to your elbows, eat over the sink type yum.If you have a passion for the Love Apple I know just the place to enjoy 350 varieties of tomatoes, and over 60 dishes prepared with the tomato as hero and and sip some of the offerings from some 40 wineries. 

Sound like fun?  Click here and start watching and dancing.  

Did you know tomatoes are the number one veggie grown in home gardens?  Of course the term vegetable is debatable as the tomato is actually botanically a fruit.  0ne of the strangest things about the history of the tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum) is the fact that, although it is of American origin, it was unknown as food in the US until long after it was commonly eaten in Europe. Until hardly more than a hundred years ago it was generally thought to be poisonous in the United States. Long before it was considered here as fit to eat, it was grown only as an ornamental garden plant, sometimes called "love apple – which is still the fondly used name. 


Photo courtesy of Gary Ibsen,

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The Love Apple