Toma-toes or To-ma-toes?
Tomatoes are a staple in most Kiwi's diets - we guarantee that you'll find one in every pantry. You might have one favourite dish you repeatably make but when you've run out ideas on what else to make with tomatoes? Tomatoes are picked at their peak and turned quickly into our passatas and canned tomatoes - often within hours of them being harvested.
Canned tomatoes often contain tomatoes, salt and citric acid - sometimes there's added calcium chloride (usually to chopped tomatoes to retain it's shape while it is cooking). Our tomato range only contains certified organic tomatoes (no herbicides or pesticides!), tomato juice, salt & citric acid.
So exactly, why is it so good to use canned tomatoes in your recipes over fresh? And what's the difference between the different sauces such as Passata (why and where should I use this?), Tomato Paste, Chopped, Whole & Cherry?
What is it? Passata is simply strained and pureed uncooked tomatoes with no additives, water or flavourings. It's perfect for sauces due to it being strained, it's beautifully smooth and goes well in pasta sauces and soups. Passata is usually made at the end of the Italian summer, when the tomatoes are at it's best - ripe and extra juicy.
These are smaller in size, but they pack flavour! You'll find the consistency a lot thicker and denser than other types of tomato products. Essentially, it is a form of concentrated tomatoes. Water is extracted from the tomatoes by it being cooked down with seeds and skins removed.
This is a popular variety and you'll find this more chunkier. The water content tends to be higher, once tomatoes are chopped, water content is released. Usually it is a time saver when added to dishes because you don't need to break up the tomatoes as much.
Whole Peeled Tomatoes
Basically they are quickly blanched, then peeled and canned. This is a favourite amongst chefs and home cooks as whole peeled tomatoes are extremely versatile. You can't make diced tomatoes whole again!
A lot less common but it provides more intense & delicious tomato flavour. Have you tried biting into a cherry tomato vs a regular tomato? You'll see what we mean.
So enough talk about tomatoes, the question is what can we cook with them? We've got 7 of our favourite recipes that you can try out - hopefully they'll be added to your weekly dinner/lunch options!
1. Lentil lasagne with basil & garlic cashew cheese
2. Hearty ancient grain soup
3. Vegan bolognese
4. Mediterranean spiced chickpea bowls
5. Tomato pesto pasta with spiced chickpeas
6. Pappa al pomodoro (onion, bread, tomato soup)