Mouth watering tomatoes are ripe for the picking
They’re red, deliciously rich in flavour and now ripe for the picking. Tomatoes are one of the most versatile fruits I know and as a rich source of lycopene, an antioxidant that helps in the fight against certain cancers, why wouldn’t they be a priority at meal times.
This fortnight I have a secret to share with you. Nestled under the Elms at Bacchus Marsh, 58 kilometres north west of Melbourne, affectionately nicknamed ‘Grandpa’s tomatoes’ are growing in the sandy loam soil along the Lerderderg River. And don’t expect to find them anywhere else, because bets are you won’t.
No one knows what this variety of tomato is called or where it originated from. Not even the Dellios family, who grow them! These mouth-watering tomatoes are fleshier than any tomato I’ve had the pleasure of eating. On that note, here is a winning tomato recipe handed down through the generations of the Dellios family that can be enjoyed with any ripe, tasty tomatoes. My sister-in-law made this chutney as a gift for each of her wedding guests.
Grandma’s tomato chutney
6 tomatoes, diced
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 large red onions, finely chopped
1 cup sultanas
2 ½ cups apple cider vinegar
2 tbsp curry powder
1 tsp chilli powder
1 tbsp salt
2 cups white sugar
3 pinches of black pepper
Place all ingredients into a large heavy-based saucepan and stir over a medium to low heat until sugar has dissolved; this usually takes about 10-15 minutes. Bring the mixture to the boil and then reduce to a low heat, allowing it to simmer until thickens. Fill hot sterilised jars with chutney and seal. Turn the jar upside down quickly as this will help to seal the jar properly.
Note: Great served with roast lamb and on sandwiches!
Big Tip! Do not store fresh tomatoes in the fridge otherwise they will lose nutritional value and flavour.
Enjoy your salads! Louise.
Join Louise on a journey through the seasons with salad ingredients, old traditions and popular, exotic or unusual vegetables. From Paddock to Plate founder, author, food writer, radio journalist & yoga teacher.