Tomatoes, Deadly Nightshade or Super Food?

A tiny minority of people hate tomatoes. Everybody else sees tomatoes as a delicious super healthy food


When it comes to tomatoes, I tend to fall in the deadly nightshade camp, because of being arthritic. Experience has proven that one for me.

I’m also cautious because of studying Ayurveda, the ancient Vedic health science that sees tomatoes as a recent (1600s) unwelcome dietary development.

More Ayurveda & Nightshades

If you think that’s silly, you might be right.

After all, Ayurveda sees dairy as a sattvic food, while I think dairy is unhealthy for most people. And for the cows and the environment.

But that’s a topic for another time.

Back to Tomatoes

I realize that my tomato aversion puts me in a tiny minority. Everybody else sees tomatoes as a super healthy and delicious food.

Tomatoes, botanically a fruit, are are off the charts for anti-oxidants and phytonutrients, including lycopene, Vit. E, Vit. C, beta-carotene, manganese – to name just a few.

Although personally I think that it’s quite possible to be healthy without them, tomatoes are good for bone health, heart health, and even have anti-cancer properties.

More Tomato Details

Love ‘em or hate ‘em, tomatoes are everywhere, in or on pasta & pizza, soups & stews, salads, sandwiches, juice.

Of course, tomatoes are best organic and ripe from the garden. Or at least, the local farmer’s market. And this is a great time of year for fresh ripe tomatoes.

Most of us know tomatoes as spaghetti sauce from a jar, cherry tomatoes in our salads, or a slice of supermarket tomato on our sandwiches.

But we can do better than that.

Even though tomatoes and me do not agree, Savvy Veg does have some tasty tomatoey recipes.

Off To the Farmer’s Market and Get Your Tomato On!

Lentil Spaghetti Bolognese Sauce:
Not only for spaghetti. Bolognese sauce also goes with quinoa or millet, tortilla chips, tucked in a taco or burrito, in a bowl with corn bread on the side – anyway you like it.
Lentil Spaghetti Sauce

Tomato Basil Garlic Pasta Sauce:
Ripe Roma tomatoes, fresh basil, garlic, oilve oil, big pot, plenty of time – Makes a quart of sublime tomato sauce, which you can horde and eat a spoonful at a time (if your friends let you).
Tomato Basil Sauce

Creamy Tomato Chickpea Soup:
Thick, rich, homemade vegan soup, perfect for chilly days. Or tomato season. Serve with chewy artesan bread for dipping. If you like, skip the creaming, and serve with parts intact.
Tomato Chickpea Soup

Tomato Jam with Rosemary and Saffron
This recipe may cause flavor explosions in your mouth. It’s that tasty! Sample recipe from Michael Natkin’s cookbook, Herbivoracious, tomato jam is perfect with his Quinoa Cakes recipe.
Tomato Jam

Judith Kingsbury, Savvy Vegetarian

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