Nothing tastes better than a fresh, juicy tomato! Vine-ripened, peak season tomatoes are available at local stores and farmers’ markets from July through October in Colorado. Greenhouse tomatoes can also be a source of fresh and juicy tomatoes year-round.
Selection and Storage of Fresh Tomatoes
- Select tomatoes that are rich in color, smooth, and free from bruises or cracks.
- Tomatoes should be heavy for their size and semi-firm.
- Store tomatoes at room temperature away from direct sunlight, with the stem end down to prolong shelf life.
- Tomatoes taste better if not refrigerated; however, refrigeration can prolong storage life if you would otherwise not be able to use them before they spoil at room temperature.
Preparing Fresh Tomatoes
- Rinse tomatoes under clean, running water.
- Use a sharp knife to remove the core, then slice or dice for the recipe or dish being prepared. Or, enjoy fresh tomatoes as a great snack!
- Serve and/or cover, and refrigerate cut tomatoes within 2 hours.
Purchasing Other Tomato Products
Look for these additional nutritious tomato products in the canned vegetable aisle of your grocery store:
- Tomato sauce: Best known with pasta dishes, tomato sauces are primarily made from tomatoes, but they may contain meat or other vegetables and seasonings.
- Tomato paste: A concentrated form of tomatoes that adds tomato flavor without adding extra liquid, and can thicken a sauce or act as a binder.
- Canned tomatoes: Available in a variety of sizes and seasoning combinations, from whole to diced. These provide a great option for enjoying tomatoes throughout the winter months.
Incorporate the rich color and taste of tomatoes into your next meal!
Did You Know?
Tomatoes are a fruit.
A tomato is grown from the ovary in the base of a flower, contains seeds, and is botanically considered a fruit.
However, tomatoes are commonly used in savory cooking dishes and are often referred to as a vegetable in culinary settings.