11 Feb2007


My veggie “suki,” Edwin, sent me a text a few days ago saying that he had fresh San Marzano plum tomatoes in stock at the FreshFields stall at Market!Market! in Fort Bonifacio. Since I happened to be in the area, I dropped by the stall and thrilled to find great looking locally grown plum tomatoes, heretofore unseen in Manila in any great volume, so I bought nearly everything he had on display. While I was a bit surprised that some of them were tom2still a bit green (they truly are best when fully ripened on the vine), I was willing to experiment at PHP100 a kilo. Back home, I left them out on the counter in a basket for 3 days and they all ripened to a terrific color; albeit of different sizes and irregular shapes. I had great hopes for this new find… This is the variety of tomato that is typically canned in Italy and is used in tomato sauces around the world. The unique shape of the fruit, the tasty pulp and terrific flavor are well known to cooks and chefs. I have always wondered why we didn’t grow these tomatoes in bulk here considering the hot temperatures and long sunlight during the summer months… I was hoping to use these tomatoes for a freshly made tomato sauce for spaghetti, or oven-dried with herbs, or in some other recipes…but I needed to wait just a bit more till they seemed fully ripened…



  1. DivineG. says:

    Your tomatoes look so good. I use lots of tomatoes in making tortang itlog, pinakbet, binagoongan, afritada etc. and this is just to name a few. Of course when eating fried tilapia or galunggong, I like to make a sawsawan of kamatis a little bagoong and kalamansi.

    Feb 11, 2007 | 10:46 pm


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  3. F1foodie says:

    What a great find in Manila! The plums definitely have a flavor that makes great sauce when they’re plentiful, like in the end of summer. They’re also very “meaty” and not as watery as other varieties so I find them perfect for broiling, topped with some chopped tarragon, salt, cracked pepper and a drizzle of olive oil. Good served with the old reliable, (made from scratch or not) mac & cheese. Can’t wait for summer.

    Feb 12, 2007 | 12:44 am

  4. Kieran says:

    What great looking tomatoes you have, MM!

    I also love to oven-dry tomatoes and store them in a jar filled with olive oil. It is so much better and costs way less than the store-bought sun-dried varieties. The flavors become more intense and is excellent in pastas and pizzas. Best of all, it keeps well in the refrigerator.

    You definitely have more willpower than I do. Those tomatoes would have found their way on my plate by now!

    Feb 12, 2007 | 2:03 pm

  5. tulip says:

    I grew some Early Girl tomatoes last summer and it was a delight to use it all up for several recipes:soup,stew and sauces. Your post reminds me of my plan to give away the tomatoes to fellow foodies to encourage them to grow it.

    Feb 12, 2007 | 3:16 pm

  6. Maria Clara says:

    I love they are all meat less water. The sun dried ones are to die for in pasta and sandwiches and for color in embutido.

    Feb 13, 2007 | 2:03 am


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