I am very passionate about tomatoes, there are so many awesome varieties. I live for that first delicious tomato ripe off the vine. In the winter months I live in a state of depression when I have to eat tasteless store bought tomatoes. It is my favorite vegetable in the garden and I have more favorites that I can count. To limit my favorites to a top 10 list is extremely hard and required real thought. Typically I plant about 25 tomato plants in my garden but life has been busy the last few years with our two daughters aged 18 months and 14 years. Our lives are revolving around the girls schedules right now and it doesn’t leave as much time for gardening, picking tomatoes or canning tomatoes. So I made the promise to my husband that I would cut back on our tomatoes and grow only 10 varieties this year, okay it will probably be 12 varieties). Well, maybe 13 or 14 but absolutely no more than 15 varieties.
Black Krim is hands down my absolute favorite tomato. While this large tomato might not be the prettiest tomato you will ever see due to its brownish purplish tint it but it will be one of the tastiest ones you will ever eat. This juicy tomato has deliciously rich flavor and is my primary tomato for fresh eating during the summer. When I recommend this tomato to my customers they always come back for more the next year, try one I guarantee you won’t be disappointed.
Dester first caught my attention a few years ago when I saw that it was the winner of the annual Seed Savers tomato tasting contest in 2011. The dester tomato produces large 1 lb fruits that are tasty and delicious and excellent for slicing. I ate this one all summer with fresh sliced mozzarella, basil leaves and olive oil–so good! I also used it for canning at the end of the season and it worked well for that too (but most went for fresh eating in our house last year).
A picture of my cherry tomato varieties from 2015.
Snow White Cherry Tomato–This one was a new addition to my garden last year but will be staple for years ahead. The tomato itself is not a pure white, more of a very pale yellow and the taste is sweet and delicious. It produced a ton of tomatoes-enough that this one plant alone could have fed my family and a good number of friends.
Sun Gold Tomato– This sweet cherry tomato always scores high in tomato taste tests across the country and for good reason. Fresh from the garden this is as close as it gets to candy on the vine. Even my friends that don’t particulary care for tomatoes will eat a few of these.
Green Zebra– I grow this tomato just as much as for it’s pretty green and yellow stripes as I do it’s tart citrus like taste. The plants produce an enormous amount of small tomatoes 3-4 ounces each. I often use these in combination with tomatillos to produce a salsa verde sauce.
Gold Medal– Every garden should have at least bicolor tomato, for me this is the one. I love cutting into one of these and seeing the yellow and pinkish colored tomato. The flavor is incredibly sweet and rich, making it one all around delicious tomato for fresh eating.
Brandywine Sudduths Strain– This large pink tomato grows 1 to 2 pounds each with sweet rich flavors. We use it for canning but it’s intense taste is great for fresh eating too (love it with mozerella, basil and olive oil).
Amish Paste-Love this tomato. It produces large meaty fruit with not many seeds so it is great for canning but also has rich flavor for slicing and fresh eating. I wouldn’t have a season without this tomato.
Super Sauce– This tomato produces the meatiest and biggest tomatoes of all of my plants. The tomatoes can get up to 2lb each. I grow these tomatoes primarily for canning and it doesn’t take too many of these tomatoes to make a good batch of sauce for canning which means less work picking, peeling and processing which means more time for other things in the garden.
Italian Heirloom–I grow this tomato primarily for canning but it is also delicious for fresh eating. The large fruits are somewhat heart shaped and have a sweet rich flavor to them. They peel really easily and cook down quickly into sauce but we use these just as much for slicing (delicious on BLT’s) and for all around fresh eating.
Martino Roma–This roma is one of my favorite tomatoes for creating sauces and salsas and for fresh eating. The plants produce a prolific amount of tomatoes all season long.
So despite having my favorites- I always make the commitment to try at least 2-3 new varieties each year. There are so many yummy varieties of tomatoes that I believe in always trying something new, you never know which one might be your new favorite. My new varieties I will be trying this year are: Moonglow, Nyagous, and Tommy Toe Cherry Tomato.
My final pick from the garden in fall of 2015.
Leave me a note and let me know your favorite tomato varieties, I’d love to know what I should try next year.