Tomatoes come in all shapes and sizes, but few of us know the difference between the various breeds; this is something worth remedying immediately. They are an essential part of many American diets. We use them in sauces, salads, on sandwiches and nearly everywhere else.
Plum tomatoes are often used for cooking, and they can be enjoyed fresh and eaten like fruit. They are very fleshy but normally have less pulp than other varieties. The lack of pulp makes them cook down in sauces quickly, making them ideal as cooking tomatoes. Many canned tomatoes are of the plum varieties. Among specific harvests are the Amish Paste with few seeds and thick skin, and the Costoluto, which are rarely preserved and more often eaten whole. The beefsteak tomato is mostly used as a slicing tomato on sandwiches, but it can also be used in cooking. Beefsteaks are those big and juicy tomatoes you see in the supermarket all the time. They’re normally less sugary and acidic than other tomatoes. Big Rainbow is a popular variety in the United States, as are the Great White and Pineapple.
Salad tomatoes are small and pulpy, and unsurprisingly most often appear in salads. They can easily be quartered or halved. Gold Dust is an orange variety of the salad tomato, and the Cherokee purple has a purplish skin, runny green insides and a very sweet taste. Cherry tomatoes number among the most popular tomato varieties. They can be as small as peas, and are most often found whole in salads or in little cartons for snacking. The variety is often bred to be especially sweet, making them a crave-able snack food. Cherry tomatoes come in a variety of colors, and thus are sometimes used in salads to add an extra dash of color. Popular breeds include the Green Grape, which come in large clusters; the Peacevine with high Vitamin C levels; and the Sun Cherry, known as the sweetest cherry tomato.