What are Heirloom Tomatoes?

Have you ever tasted an heirloom tomato? If not, you are in for a real treat! If all you’ve ever eaten was those standard red hydroponic tomatoes you get in the grocery store you are missing out on a tasty, complex mouthful of luxury!

I remember the first time I tasted an heirloom tomato. I was making a romantic dinner for my fiance so went to the fancy health food grocer in the area. The produce department had been thoroughly picked through so the only tomatoes that were left were the organic heirloom tomatoes. They were 2 times the cost of regular tomatoes and were so ugly! They were all different colors, bumps in the wrong places and some of them were scarred from cracking. I was poor at the time so had not been buying organics either. Come to find out organic tomatoes also have a better taste as well. The person working there saw me debating whether or not to buy the tomatoes and assured me I needed to try them. In the end my romantic dinner was a hit because the flavor was amazing!

So, what is the difference between heirloom tomatoes besides appearance and taste? Heirlooms are grown from seeds that have been passed down from generation to generation and grow true to the way they were years ago. Some older than 100 years! Newer tomato seeds have been hybridized, or modified, so that the plants produce more, attractive fruit and are resistant to diseases. It’s the best way to feed a lot of people but the focus was not on taste. So heirloom tomatoes are higher priced for good reason. The plants produce fewer of them for the same amount of work.

Heirloom tomatoes come in an array of colors including red, brown, purplish, orange, yellow and green. Some even come with one color as a base with a starburst of a different color on the top. The darker colored tomatoes in the picture are called Purple Cherokee. They also come in all sizes, including small cherry. Good news for people with heartburn problems…… green and yellow heirlooms are lower in acid.

So if you haven’t tried an heirloom tomato yet, give it a try! It may end up being an addiction!

 

Expanding the Simple Life

Hello my blog followers. First I need to apologize for my long absence.   Over the last year our lives have completely changed here. As you well know from my posts I’ve been talking more and more about eating food in it’s rawest form and knowing where your food comes from. Well……..I started with growing my own food and have now expanded into an actual FARM!

It started with sharing my excess vegetables with my family, friends and co-workers who loved them so much they asked if  they could have more and would even pay for them. So, last summer I added more rows to my garden and started to sell. I couldn’t meet the demand of my snap peas, beans, cucumbers and summer squash. That’s when it hit us. We have a FARM!

I was already planning on getting chickens for fresh eggs, but so many of my vegetable customers asked about them I decided to sell eggs as well. Instead of buying a couple hens, we decided to buy 30! We have enough egg customers to cover all the excess eggs those hens produce.

The property we bought has fruit trees so the obvious next step was getting bees. We bought two hives and plan to buy 2 more this year. No honey yet but we already have customer lined up for the honey too.

As you can see we were a little overwhelmed by all this so I really didn’t have time to focus on this blog. Now that things are a little quieter I promise to dedicate time sharing my thoughts on living healthy in a more simple way. I don’t plan to spend a lot of time talking about the farm but if you want to follow what is happening there you can visit that blog at http://www.5280artisanfarm.com/.