The tomato is not a vegetable but a fruit—a berry, to be exact. Tomatoes come in a variety of sizes as well as colors, including yellow, orange and red, and can even be used and enjoyed while still green.

Choose nicely ripened, well-shaped tomatoes. Fully ripe tomatoes should be slightly soft but not mushy and have a rich red color.

Store ripe tomatoes at room temperature and use within a few days. Don’t refrigerate tomatoes; cold temperatures make the flesh pulpy and destroys the flavor. Ripen tomatoes by placing in a pierced paper bag with an apple for several days at room temperature (65° to 75° F). Don’t place them in the sun.

There are literally hundreds of different tomato varieties. We usually choose our favorite varieties by some combination of flavor, texture, and appearance.

Tomatoes are also an excellent source of free radical-scavenging vitamin C and vitamin A as well as bone-healthy vitamin K. They are a very good source of enzyme-promoting molybdenum; heart-healthy potassium, vitamin B6, folate, and dietary fiber; blood sugar-balancing manganese. In addition, tomatoes are a good source of heart-healthy magnesium, niacin, and vitamin E; energy-producing iron, vitamin B1, and phosphorus; muscle-building protein, and bone-healthy copper.

Recipes using: Tomatoes

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