The tomato in summer, an essential food for the warmer months.
The tomato is undoubtedly one of the most important ingredients of Mediterranean cuisine, since it is a healthy and versatile fruit (yes, because that’s what it actually is), which lends itself perfectly to the preparation of an endless number of summer dishes and recipes thanks to its freshness, which reaches its peak in summer.
Although tomatoes can be bought throughout the year, their fruits ripen in the warmer months which is when they better express their organoleptic attributes to be appreciated in thousands of variations,
in recipes that require cooking or, even better, for lovers of quick and easy summer recipes, raw.
As mentioned above, although it is commonly classified as a vegetable, the tomato is actually a fruit belonging to the solanaceae family. It was Carl Linnaeus who botanically classified it as a fruit in 1753, giving it the scientific name Solanum lycopersicum.
History and interesting facts about tomatoes.
What is now a classic ingredient of Mediterranean cuisine for us, almost a symbol of our food and tradition, actually came to Europe from America in the second half of the 16th century, thanks to the expeditions of Hernán Cortés.
Its origins are actually South American, seemingly already very widespread among the Aztecs before the arrival of the Conquistadors. The indigenous peoples in those lands called this fruit “xitomatl”, from where the English word “tomato” is derived.
Initially and for almost two centuries, the tomato was only used for ornamental purposes, to embellish the dining table. It’s amazing to think how our ancestors had a real gem in their hands and didn’t realize it for so long!
Originally, the tomato was not the bright red colour that we know today, a colour which, for many, is associated with summer and its fresh and tasty dishes. In fact, it was golden, and thanks to cross-selection and grafting between plants, today’s colour was achieved.
Operation bikini: no issues with the tomato!
Delicious in cooked or raw dishes, perhaps seasoned with a little olive oil and a pinch of salt; it’s red colour that for many is synonymous with summer is lovely to look at, but… can tomatoes also help us stay in shape in the summer months and, better yet, keep us healthy?
Of course! First of all, tomatoes are the perfect food for those who are afraid of gaining weight, as they only provide 18 calories for every 100 grams of product.
In addition, thanks to the abundance of water and potassium, the consumption of fresh and raw tomatoes has a diuretic effect, which reduces fluid retention and the formation of cellulite.
The mineral component of the tomato is also significant, thanks to the high amounts of potassium, iron, zinc, selenium, calcium and phosphorus it contains, which makes this fruit an excellent natural dietary supplement, perfect for recovering the minerals that the body loses in abundance in summer due to increased sweating.
Best of all, the health benefits of tomatoes don’t end there. This fruit is also very rich in vitamin C, essential for the functioning of the immune system, without forgetting that recent studies have also shown its effectiveness as an anti-inflammatory and have even identified some anti-cancer properties in tomatoes.
Still in doubt about what should be the main ingredient in your summer dishes? Run out and buy some delicious Monterosa tomatoes right now and prepare one of the many summer dishes that we offer you in this section.