How did tomatoes get to Italy, then? The most likely source is Spain. After Spanish explorers and conquistadors arrived on this continent they brought the vegetable to Europe. And speaking of Spain, a really marvelous tomato originated there. It’s called a Kumato and is a hybrid of green and red tomatoes. They are usually found in golf-ball size, but are grown in cherry size, too. Their mixed ancestry gives Kumatoes a rich brown color. They make a beautiful addition to salads and cooked vegetable dishes, but their beauty isn’t just skin deep. They have a gorgeous taste and are an especially sweet variety of the vegetable.
Which brings up another question. Are tomatoes vegetables or fruits? The answer is they are both! Tomatoes, (and Kumatoes,) are considered to be a fruit botanically. Their low sugar content results in use and labeling as vegetable in the culinary world, though.
I like to use Kumatoes in cold dishes like BLT’s and in mixed vegetable salads. They blend especially well with creamy avocados and crunchy cucumbers. You can put a stunning look on your table by mixing them with other exotic veggies like rainbow carrots, as I’ve done in the dish pictured along with this post. Find it and other easy cookbook recipes that call for tomatoes here and have a happy Florida Tomato Day!