The Versatile Tomato and Its Benefits

by WriterArtist

Few fruits can tickle the bud as tomato. It is a fruit not vegetable and yet it is so versatile. Fascinatingly it is used as an ingredient to every possible recipe - raw or cooked.

Amazingly the tomato was considered a poisonous fruit some centuries back. It took some time to break this bias and discrimination. To enter in our kitchen and food industry this fiery red berry had to fight its way for popularity and into becoming the most loved and popular addition to culinary kingdom. Tomato was once called the Love Apple. French gave this name to the lovely red berry the pomme d’amour thinking that as attractive as it was a fruit capable of displaying exotic aphrodisiac properties.

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Image by Couleur from Pixabay

Tomatoes in Culinary World

Fresh Tomatoes

You can eat it raw like a fruit, prepare tomato juice and drink it happily or you can cook it like a vegetable, make curries and chutneys. It is comparatively treated more as a vegetable than fruit.

Mouth watering, tasty and juicy, nothing can beat the fresh tomatoes picked up from farmhouse, nursery or your kitchen garden. It is a companion food that matches well with zucchini, cheese and cream. A favourites of chefs and housewives alike, it also caters to amateur cooks.

Inception of Tomato

Humble Beginnings


We hear first about tomatoes in Central America as its origins. From there, it travelled to Spain, Mexico, other parts of Europe and now it is grown all over the world. There are more than ten thousand tomato cultivars approved for farming, cultivation and consumption. Out of these, there are more than 15000 varieties in cultivation with 3000 types of heirloom heritage. India boasts of 7500 or more varieties with peculiar names as Pusa, Roma, Cherry, Rasmi, Rupali etc.





Wiki classifies tomato as a berry from plant Solanum lycopersicum. The best yield of tomatoes come from high altitude, low humidity and sunny areas. The versatile species can be grown in winter and spring in many different locations of the world. The biggest cultivators of tomatoes is China followed by India and US. Tomatoes are consumed and produced by more than 170 countries in the world.

Culinary Uses of Tomato

Tomato an Important Ingredient


Tomato is not new to anybody. I am yet to meet anyone who haven’t consumed tomato not like tomato in some form or other. People love tomato ketchup and it comes in various flavours. It is an important ingredient of pasta, pizza and sandwiches. Indians use it in chutneys and curries. It is an important ingredient of salsa and salads.

How to Eat Tomato

Raw or Cooked


One can eat raw tomatoes that are red and ripe in salads and sandwiches. One can also eat them cooked with vegetables, in stew, soups, sauce, pizza, pasta etc. In Indian kitchen, tomatoes are used in veg curries, chutneys and salads. Cherry tomatoes and sun dried tomatoes are favourites of many.

The taste of red ripe tomato is sweet and sour. Making tomato a part of your diet will ensure continuous supply of nutrition. Wash your tomatoes with plenty of water before eating or cooking.

Tomatoes that do not use pesticides for harvesting should be the best and nothing better than the ones that are organic are grown in your garden locally.

Health Benefits of Tomatoes

Nutrition Facts


For better functioning of body and yield, raw tomatoes are best when consumed with skin.

It becomes even better when tomatoes are cooked.  Tomatoes when cooked release an antioxidant called Lycopene that is very effective in fighting with cancer. Lycopene is also good for the heart.

Although tomatoes contain solanine a source of inflammation, there is no connection established it to the aggravation of arthritis. A number of micro nutrients and vitamins such as C, A and potassium, folic acid are available in tomatoes.

Benefits of Tomatoes

Do you like your tomatoes Raw or Cooked?

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DerdriuMarriner on 05/05/2021

Writer/Artist, I voted raw since it's nice weather here and a fresh tomato is so cooling but it's cooked particularly during cool weather.

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Updated: 05/03/2021, WriterArtist
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How often do you use tomatoes?

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DerdriuMarriner on 05/05/2021

Writer/Artist, Thank you for pictures, practicalities and products.
Tomatoes are among the foods that yesterday's and today's space-travel researchers prioritize for tomorrow's space travelers. They're competitive with carrots in terms of vision-improving lutein.

WriterArtist on 04/30/2021

Wow. You have a garden which grows tomatoes. Nothing beats fresh tomatoes out of your own kitchen garden

blackspanielgallery on 04/30/2021

I just had one today, from my own garden. I lose some to birds, but win the race with others.

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