Saturday, September 5, 2009
RED FIG - (I) - Catalog #27
Leaf Type - Regular
Days to Maturity - 70
SIMPLY TOMATOES NOTES:
The Red Fig tomatoes have been grown in America since the 18th century. The Red Fig is an heirloom tomato named for a sweet delicacy that was made with this tomato and popular in the mid 1800s. Historically they were dried and packed away for winter use in substitute of figs. This is a big, leafy, indeterminate, regular-leaf tomato plant that is supposed to yield hundreds of 1 1/2-inch, pear-shaped, bright-red cherry tomatoes that have wonderful, delicious, sweet flavors with a very sweet skin, making this a delightful snacking tomato. A perfect choice to serve in a tomato salad or as a tasty decoration to culinary creations and to use for making a delicious tomato chutney. Rare tomato seeds.
Again, the weather of Summer 2009, really knocked the wind out of this plant, but as of September 5, it is making a comeback (per our picture above). I like these tomatoes and they do make a pretty pot with the Thai Basil, but the flavor is not as stunning as it should be. Ho Hum, I hink it is the weather.
To make the “figs,” boiling water was poured over the tomatoes to remove the skins and then the skinless tomatoes were placed in a stone jar with equal parts sugar to tomatoes. The resulting syrup was then removed from the jar and boiled and skimmed. The process was repeated over two days, with intervals of cooling. Finally, the tomatoes were dried in the sun for about a week at which point they were packed in small wooden boxes, with fine, white sugar between every layer. Tomatoes prepared in this manner were said to keep for years. (Note: A great 1840s family recipe is available in Heirloom Vegetable Gardening by William Woys Weaver.)