It’s tomato time in Florida, and restau­rants are show­cas­ing them at the peak of grow­ing sea­son

Palm Beach Daily News - - TODAY - By M.M. CLOUTIER

It’s an age-old ques­tion that’ll prob­a­bly be asked for years to come, flum­mox­ing school kids and even some adults: Is the tomato a fruit or a veg­etable?

Why does that ques­tion en­dure? No one’s hash­ing over other veg­eta­bles clas­si­fied botan­i­cally as fruits.

That’s be­cause we’re talk­ing about toma­toes, which in

Palm Beach as else­where star in scads of ev­ery­day fa­vorite dishes — from cap­rese salad and bright sal­sas, to gaz­pa­cho, the clas­sic BLT and even kicky fra di­avolo pas­tas.

Toma­toes epit­o­mize per­fec­tion all on their own, per­haps via a gar­den-warm slice of one sprin­kled with olive oil and coarse sea salt.

But more to the point, now’s tomato time: To the envy of north­ern­ers who won’t see a blush on the vine un­til sum­mer, it’s peak tomato grow­ing sea­son for Florida’s boun­teous month­s­long crop.

“We love spring as much as the next per­son, but toma­toes are the real rea­son for this sunny sea­son here,” says Se­bastien Tri­bout, Meat Mar­ket’s di­rec­tor of op­er­a­tions. “These jew­els of the vine have so much to give in terms of fla­vor and we love to work with them as much as pos­si­ble with our lo­cal farm­ers.”

Meat Mar­ket, 191 Bradley Place, is cel­e­brat­ing toma­toes — a “par­tic­u­larly good ex­am­ple” of the “bright and col­or­ful” essence of spring, Tri­bout says — in new dishes.

Among them: cherry tomato, beet and ri­cotta salad with hazel­nuts, basil oil and bal­samic.

Meat Mar­ket is among sev­eral eater­ies in town in­cor­po­rat­ing toma­toes into a num­ber of dishes, hot and cold and in­be­tween.

Cour­tesy of Four Sea­sons

Since join­ing the Four Sea­sons’ Jove Kitchen & Bar ear­lier this sea­son, chef Florenzo Bar­bieri has en­joyed, among other things, work­ing with Florida’s boun­ti­ful toma­toes.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.