Gearing up to photograph all of recipes and pin-up shots for Tomato Week meant buying lots and lots of tomatoes at the Union Square Greenmarket. Really. It took four of us (and a taxi cab) to get them all safely back to our office, a mere 10 blocks away.
But of all those that made it back, the one I admired most—more than the honkin' hulks or the haughty cherries with their tufts of vine-hair—was the least "TOMATOOOOO!" of the group. If I had judged by appearance only, I might not have even known that it was a tomato at all.
It was the size, and feel, of a baby's fist, so soft and fuzzy that I wanted to hold hands with it all the way home from the market. Its color was a muted yellow and its skin matte. I pointed out its existence to every person who came to look.
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My tomato—I consider him my own—made a subtle, but impactful, appearance in our tomato bonanza shot. Look at him there, all cuddled up against the punnet of the fat orange Sun Golds trying to steal the show:
It wasn't until later, when I spoke to Cecilia Estreich of Baldor Food, that I realized I wasn't the only fan.
When I asked her about the produce she was particularly excited about this season, she told me about a variety of fuzzy-on-the-outside heirloom tomatoes that Baldor sources from Pennsylvania farmers—and they're called Garden Peach Tomatoes. (As my boyfriend pointed out, Apricot Tomato, or even Pluot Tomato, might be a more fitting name. But peach it is.)
When I tracked them down again, at the Norwich Meadows Farms stand on a Saturday in Union Square, farmer Zaid Kurdieh told me that, of all the tomatoes he sells, Garden Peaches are one of his favorites, too: Sweet but vegetal, without any lingering sourness; the slightest bit squishy when ripe.
So what if these tomatoes fancy themselves peaches? They're still tomatoes on the inside:
And, we certainly can't forget: Tomatoes are fruits anyway. (What? You thought we could get halfway through Tomato Week without mentioning that?)
What's your favorite heirloom variety? Tell us in the comments below!
A (former) student of English, a lover of raisins, a user of comma splices. My spirit animal is an eggplant. I'm probably the person who picked all of the cookie dough out of the cookie dough ice cream. For that, I'm sorry.