Mary Ann's Blog

A Tomato Is A Tomato

For the life of me I do not understand the avoidance of purchasing fresh farm grown tomatoes that are “not exactly round.” Are we so conditioned by the giant agribusiness conglomerates that dictate what our food should look like? Perfect specimens of equal size and color?

So many times I have observed this at farmers markets where a variety of heirloom tomatoes are on display from gorgeous pinky-purple Brandywine to the ridged Costoluto Genovese. They do not sell nearly as well as the round beef steak varieties because we have been conditioned to think that all tomatoes must be red and round. We are reluctant to try anything that is outside the realm of this description and that is too bad because we are missing out on some sensational tasting, real tomatoes that are only going to be around for a short time.

Right now my garden is about to give way to many heirlooms and cherry types including Sun Gold one of my very favorite yellow cherry tomatoes. Funny, yellow cherry tomatoes don’t move as quickly as their bright red cousins but I can tell you for certain that they ARE better tasting.

Plum tomatoes for making tomato sauce need to be plump and meaty with few seeds. My favorite is Redorta, an elongated, heavy in the hand plum tomato that cooks up into a delicious tomato sauce.

The calendar says July but I don’t think some people have noticed as they continue to buy store variety, cardboard tasting, genetically engineered so called tomatoes.

Great tomato recipes at


  1. Carol Caruso Lott's avatar

    Carol Caruso Lott

    I will have to take pictures of some of my ugly tomatoes. I just love the dark meaty color when I slice them. We have some heirlooms that are just delicious.
  2. Mary Wetherell's avatar

    Mary Wetherell

    Hi, Mary Ann!
    Just watched episode 2208 where you stuffed a leg of lamb for a man named Joe who owns the store where you got the lamb. Where is Joe's store and what is its name?
    Thanks so much! Love your show. You're a great cook.
  3. mary ann esposito's avatar

    mary ann esposito

    Joe Pace and Son is located in Saugus, Massachusetts. Wonderful place and great products. Tell him I said hi!
  4. Carole Pucci's avatar

    Carole Pucci

    Hi Marianne,

    Watch you all the time on PBS and just love the way you prepare Italian food. Have made several of your recipes and will continue to do so. I especially love your pasta dishes.
  5. Maria Catalano's avatar

    Maria Catalano

    Hi Maryann

    I was given a bunch of tomatoes from a friends garden. I have never canned before so I was wondering if I can make freh sauce with these tomatoes and then Freeze it instead. If so is there anything I should not do and how long can I freeze it? Thank you!!
  6. Barb Sanko's avatar

    Barb Sanko

    I survive three seasons of the year dreaming of summer heirloom tomatoes. I eat at least one a day from the time the first one ripens. My favorites are German Johnson and Purple Cherokee. Together, they make a gorgeous creamy gazpacho andulez, just unforgettable. I toast a whole wheat bread round, top with a tomato slice, basil, and motz cheese and pop under the broiler until the cheese melts. So simple, so outstanding! Wouldn't want a blt sandwich any other way....could go on forever. Within the next week, I will begin waiting once more for the next tomatoe crop -- 10 long months away.

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