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TomatoMania- A History Lesson

perfect green tomato on the vineAs you may know I am right in the middle of my tribute to mustard. As long as the hills near my house are bursting out golden-yellow from the blooms of wild mustard plants, then I am posting mustard ideas.

But it is Maniac Monday so I will divert momentarily so that all you TomatoManiacs can get your weekly fix of tomato info.

Tomorrow it’s back to the business of mustard with something everybody can love. Grilled Cheese (with mustard)!

Scott Daigre is off to another TomatoMania event and will be back with more growing tips next Monday. But I am going to use this time to tease you with a tomato contest we will soon be announcing. More on that very soon…

I also want to give you a little background about the tomato from a culinary standpoint!

Despite its firm place in European cooking the tomato has it’s origins in the Americas. It was cultivated by the Aztecs and was an important part of their diet as far back as 700AD.

It was brought back to Spain by merchant vessels. Though the British deemed the fruit “poisonous”, it quickly caught on culinarily throughout Southern Europe where growing conditions were ideal.

TomatoMania- Start Your Engines!

a colander full of beautiful tomatoesTomatoMania finally had its first 2009 Los Angeles area event. It was at Tapia Brothers Farm Stand in Encino. It was a big hit (as always!). So Scott Daigre is recovering this week.

As you can imagine he really throws himself into these things (because he’s the original “maniac”). So he asked me to step in on this the latest of what has officially become, and will remain through the tomato growing season, Maniac Mondays.

The weekend was an undeniable hit. The line snaked out the front gates and through the parking lot. The die-hard TomatoManiacs were the first to arrive…in force!

But the regular old TomatoManiacs like me kept a steady stream of plants moving from the sale grounds to the trunks of cars.  All kinds of cars too.