Friday, 7 June 2013

What's up with tomatoes??

While the cost of fresh fruit and veg has gone up, I think the quality has come down.  I'm fed up buying stuff that has very little flavour.  On principle I refuse to buy fruit out of season.  Strawberries in December? Come on!!  Not only do they cost a small fortune and have been flown in from goodness knows where, they don't even taste like strawberries.
So on seeing British tomatoes in Sainsbury's I treated myself to some Taste the Difference ones on the vine (ie more expensive) and looked forward to having them. But I was disappointed.  They were pretty tasteless. Both varieties! I briefly considered returning to the store to complain but a round trip of 30 miles just to return some tomatoes seemed daft and I wasn't due to be back in town for several days. 

So not wanting to waste them I sliced the big ones in half sprinkled a little sea salt on them and roasted them in the oven.  Flavour instantly improved.

I served the little ones with some pea, prawn and basil risotto (all ingredients from my freezer) and had a bistro worthy meal.  The large ones were doused in a little balsamic vinegar and used in a salad the next day. And very nice they were too!

Problem is I want to eat fresh tomatoes and I want ones that are grown in proper soil outside.  Not kept in a greenhouse and grown hydroponically.  And I'd be happy to pay a bit more for them and peppers, cucumbers, apples etc if they tasted real.

Now, I have 5 tasteless apples in my fruit bowl.  What can I do with them I wonder?


  1. I'd suggest a sprinkle of sugar and cinnamon on the apples then turn them into crumble, or else core them, stuff the centres with sultanas, wrap them in pastry and bake them - delicious. :) Not very summer-weather-dessert-ish, though, unless you have ice cream. :)

  2. I am so glad I am not the only person to find tomatoes tasteless these days. I actually stopped buying them for a while, could not justify the price, although they are a bit cheaper at the moment. I think the answer is to cook some fruit and veg, I find fresh apricots utterly tastless but cooked they are lovely.

  3. Fingers crossed I'll have home grown ones soon, they are just starting to appear on the plants, but like you I've been mostly roasting my bought tomatoes to improve the flavour.

    I'd cook the apple, lightly stewed with a bit of brown sugar and a sprinkle of cinnamon it might taste of something vaguely appley, well you can only hope :-)

  4. apples are easy. Use them to extend mince. Peel and chop and cook in the mince to make it go further - about 2 apples per half kilo seems about right.

    I hate flavourless food so it's all local here - this does mean eating rather too much leek and silverbeet at this time of year but at least it tastes ok.

    viv in nz

    1. Not tried apple in mince. I've used grated carrots and courgettes to stretch it in the past.

  5. Next time try the tomatoes as a fruit. Slice them and add a sprinkling of castor sugar, serve with pancakes or scones. It gives them a whole new flavour (they are a fruit after all) and something until you try you would not believe. It was an old man in the village who grew his own tomatoes who told us about this many moons ago. I would make a spiced apple cake with the apples, not a lover of apples on their own.