13 Heirloom Tomato Recipes – The View from Great Island

Cooked heirloom tomato recipes

Heritage tomatoes are fashionable, but they are expensive, delicate, hard to find, and did I mention expensive? The answer is a resounding YES!! Here’s everything you need to know, plus the best inheritance tomato recipes!

If you haven’t jumped on the bandwagon yet, there’s plenty of time this summer to discover heritage tomatoes in all their glorious variety. These multicolored gems aren’t just sweet to behold, each has a different juicy flavor profile. Their beautiful colors make them exciting to use, and it’s always a surprise when you cut one.

Heritage Tomato Recipes

to Start

Inheritance Tomato Caprese Salad Tomato Toasting Tomato Heritage Tomato Tomato

  • Basil Salad
  • with Heritage Tomatoes Inheritance Tomatose

  • Bruschetta
  • Heritage

  • Tomatoes Parmesan Bread
  • with Tomato

  • (Spanish Tomato Bread)
  • Roasted halibut with tomatoes, peppers and olives
  • Shirazi salad (Persian cucumber and
  • tomato salad)

  • Marinated mozzarella with basil
  • with summer tomatoes

  • Southern tomato pie with fried onions
  • Tomato and tuna summer salad Tomato and tuna salad
  • with

  • A.1. VinaigretteAre

heredity tomatoes genetically modified?

Don’t! Heirloom is a relatively new term for old vegetables. It is commonly accepted that relics are pre-1940 varieties, either from small farms or families who have passed them down from generation to generation because they were fantastic.

As agriculture has modernized over the years, small farms and family farms have been replaced by large business operations. As a result, the seeds of many ancient varieties of vegetables, fruits and beans were also lost. Those prized varieties were adaptable, delicious and varied.

Guess what? Tomatoes were originally multicolored ~ pure red tomatoes are a mutation that has been bred since the 1940s! So the next time you see a bunch of rainbow-colored tomatoes, you’ll know that’s what nature intended.

Tomato salad Heirloom Bruschetta

Shirazi (Persian cucumber tomato salad


heredity tomatoes taste better?

It’s no secret that modern tomatoes from grocery stores just don’t taste very good, in fact, they don’t taste like tomatoes! Commercial tomatoes have long been bred for certain characteristics that help them sell. Over the years, tomatoes have become redder, rounder and tougher, so they can be shipped nationwide without breaking. Tomatoes have been bred for quantity over quality, and guess what? The tomatoes eventually lost much of their special “tomato” flavor in the process.

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Heredity tomatoes are tomatoes that have been lovingly passed down from generation to generation simply because they taste amazing. Small farms and families have saved and replanted the seeds of the best of the best for generations.

They can be lumpy, bumpy and malformed. They do not transport well. But they come in wonderful colors that can spark your palate and make healthy eating exciting again. That makes them worthwhile in my book.


Tomato Gifted Gazpacho

Bucatini with Popped

Tomatoes Where to Find Heritage Tomatoes Needless to say, farmers markets are the best places to


heritage tomatoes. But you can often find them at your regular grocery store as well. Even in smaller cities and suburbs, big grocery stores are starting to carry them. Chains like Whole Foods and Trader Joes’ stock them. If you really live off the beaten track, you can try to cultivate them yourself. You can find all kinds of inheritance seeds from this company, and they have a whole collection of inheritance tomato seeds.

Note: grocery stores usually stack tomatoes from the inheritance in a separate pile, all mixed, do not separate the different varieties. My store also sells them in plastic packages.


Salad Burrata Caprese

How to choose tomatoes Heirloom

relics are extremely delicate, so go calmly with pinching and squeezing. I like to choose firm, firmer specimens than I would with regular commercial tomatoes. If a relic feels soft to the touch, it’s a good bet that it’s past its prime. The super firm ones will soften if left on the counter for a day or two.

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Choose your relics according to what you want to do with them ~ the crooked ones are fine to cut, but I try to find relatively symmetrical rounds if I know I’m going to cut them.

The colors vary wildly and so do the flavors, so it’s worth experimenting and seeing what you like. I’ve found the bright yellow variety to be relatively soft, but I love the dark red/olive-green ones. If you see a color variation on the outside, chances are the inside is also a beautiful mix, so if I’m making a plate of sliced tomatoes for company, I choose the variegated ones.

Bread with tomato Tomato


tomatoes of inheritance

How to store and / or ripen

inheritance tomatoes

After bringing home heritage tomatoes, keep them on the counter, away from direct sun. They will continue to ripen, so if your tomatoes are super firm, they will benefit from a day or two at room temperature. If you want to ripen your tomatoes faster, place them in a paper bag and leave them on the counter.

Use soft ripe tomatoes as soon as possible ~ make a quick tomato sandwich or an uncooked Easy Pasta Alla Checca.

Do not put tomatoes in the refrigerator, it makes them soft and unattractive.

Tomato and summer tuna salad

Grilled cherry tomato bruschetta

How to use heritage tomatoes The golden rule when it comes to


heredity tomatoes is simple: don’t try too hard! Let the magnificent juicy tomatoes take center stage ~ just give them a little nudge in the right direction.

Reserve relics for raw or lightly cooked applications. While you can use heredity tomatoes in exactly the same way you use any regular tomato, heirlooms are more expensive, so you wouldn’t hide them in a traditional stew or marinara sauce, for example. But you could make a quick raw sauce for a bowl of pasta, or cut them for pasta alla checca. I also like to roast, roast or blister them quickly over high heat to intensify their sweetness and flavor.

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The way I use my tomatoes depends on how they look. If I have good round specimens, I could cut them for gourmet or BLT burgers. If I have deformed, I will cut them for salads, etc.

Heritage cherry tomatoes make great sauces cooked quickly ~ just leave them halfway and mix them in a pan with a little garlic, olive oil and fresh herbs… Mix it with pasta or place it on top of grilled seafood. I also like to use cherries for sauce. And they are a good option for grilling (pricking) and blistering because their skins are resistant.

Caprese Heirloom Tomato Salad with Kalamata Olive Vinaigrette

Baked white fish with burst cherry

tomatoes How to preserve heritage tomatoes One of my favorite

ways to

preserve heredity tomatoes is to make gazpacho and freeze it. Tomatoes cannot be frozen in their entire state because freezing breaks down the cell walls of watery fruits and vegetables and makes them soft, but with gazpacho they have already been mixed, so it works!

Similarly, you can make a quick mash of tomatoes to freeze for other uses like pasta sauce.

You can dry cherry tomatoes from inheritance, I have instructions here.

You can cut diced tomatoes, instructions here. Note: Heredity tomatoes are high moisture tomatoes and will not hold their shape for whole canning.

Southern Tomato Pie with Fried Onions

Hummus Farmers


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