Nutrition information: Tomatoes are very high in antioxidants, including excellent levels of vitamin C and beta-carotene, and good amounts of manganese and vitamin E, all of which support to heart health (1).
Preparation tips: Remove the core of large tomatoes with a sharp paring knife. Slice the tomato using a very sharp or serrated knife (dull knives will mash tomatoes). Cooking tempers the acidic nature of tomatoes. For a quick dinner, sauté onion in a pan with oil or butter, add season veggies (eggplant, okra, peppers, zucchini, etc.) and cook down for 3-5 minutes. Add in chopped tomatoes and allow to cook down for 15-20 minutes, until the tomatoes have ‘mellowed’ or become less acidic and have broken down forming a sauce. Add seasonings, fresh or dried herbs, salt and pepper and serve over a grain or pasta.
Storage tips: Tomatoes should be stored at room temperature out of direct sunlight for up to one week, depending on ripeness at time of purchase. If the tomatoes begin to overripe before you are ready to use them, place them in the warmest area of your fridge for up to two days. Allow to return to room temperature before using to restore their juiciness and flavor. Tomatoes freeze well, are easy to can, and taste great dried. Make an extra big batch of tomato sauce and freeze portions in ziplock baggies or plastic containers for use in the winter.