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The Australian Women's Weekly - - Contents - EDITED by JACKIE FRENCH

grow­ing lus­cious toma­toes

To­mato time

Sum­mer means true toma­toes, so avour­ful you can smell them at arm’s length, so juicy your knife must be sharp or ser­rated. If they weren’t vaguely the same shape and colour, you’d never guess they were re­lated to su­per­mar­ket toma­toes that have lost what­ever avour they once had from be­ing held in cold stor­age.

The best roof to­mato

If you have a rooftop gar­den, you’ll need big pots of cherry toma­toes, ones that can be plucked like fruit and eaten on the spot. Try Cherry Cock­tail with its mas­sive trusses of bright red fruit all through the hot months, or Tommy Toe, which of­ten wins to­mato taste tests.

The best kids’ to­mato

Buy a mix of cherry toma­toes such as Cherry Rain­bow, which will give you bite-sized red, pink, pur­ple and yel­low toma­toes, round, oval or pear-shaped. Ir­re­sistible: kids have to keep try­ing each one to see which is best – and ‘best’ will vary as sum­mer be­comes au­tumn.

The best sauc­ing to­mato

Ox­heart Red, an old va­ri­ety with thick flesh and very few seeds, cooks to a deep, lus­cious pulp. It’s bril­liant for pasta or pizza sauce, clas­sic bot­tled to­mato sauce or chut­ney.

The one-up­man­ship to­mato

Green Ze­bra is the ul­ti­mate show-off to­mato: sweet, ten­der, richly flavoured – but still green. “Just taste it and you’ll see,” you can tell your puz­zled guest. It’s also in­cred­i­bly pro­duc­tive.

The to­mato salad to­mato

Try Black Crim. It looks stun­ning

The eas­i­est toma­toes of all Buy a pot con­tain­ing a ready-grown, good-sized bush that has fruit on it, in a self-wa­ter­ing pot that just needs top­ping up now and then.

Feed with slow-re­lease fer­tiliser, pick and eat.

(more red than black) and tastes mag­nif­i­cent. One draw­back is that you will get a far smaller crop than with al­most any other to­mato but it’s worth grow­ing at least one bush.

The best cold cli­mate to­mato

Siberian will ger­mi­nate at 4ºC, crop at about 15ºC and keep pro­duc­ing un­til heavy frosts kill it.

Best hot and hu­mid to­mato

Try Money­maker, Tropic or Thai Pink egg. The lat­ter re­ally do look like pink eggs, about 40cm long and cope even with heavy sum­mer rain. Tropic is ex­cel­lent for “hot enough to melt the bi­tu­men” ar­eas with round fruit, ex­cel­lent flavour and a deep red.

The con­nois­seur’s to­mato

Pur­ple Chero­kee is, of course, pur­ple, but also deeply, in­cred­i­bly lus­cious. Serve slices al­ter­nat­ing with green av­o­cado and white cheese: stun­ning.

My favourite to­mato

Grosse Lisse is an old-fash­ioned clas­sic, pro­duc­tive, re­li­able, de­li­cious – and I love it.

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