Last year we started growing heirloom Ivory Egg tomatoes using plants we bought at Debaggio’s, our favorite herb farm and nursery. They always have a fantastic selection of healthy plants, and we ended up with 20 tomato plants, 4 tomatillo plants, 6 bell pepper plants, and 12 hot pepper plants. That may sound crazy, but we’ve been expanding our garden a little each year and we have plenty of space for all of those. Plus we were hedging our bet that some of the plants wouldn’t make it and we wanted to ensure there would be some stuff to pick. We got that in spades. So far we’ve put up almost 40 quarts of tomatoes in soup, salsa, and sauces. The tomatoes are slowing down a bit now, but several of the plants are still producing well, including the Ivory Eggs.
I fell in love with these tomatoes when I first tasted them last year. They were fresh and warm from the summer sun, and the flavor was mild and slightly sweet, perfect for slicing up and eating out of the bowl with a pinch of salt. They are one of my favorite tomatoes in the garden, both for the flavor and their prolific production, which goes all the way to frost. This year Michael wanted to try a salsa with them. I thought they might be too sweet, but after tasting this salsa we worked up together, I was pleasantly surprised. Its mild, fresh flavor is a little addictive and perfect for spooning over grilled chicken or fish.
Low acid tomatoes are naturally sweet and benefit from a little citrus juice, such as lime, to complement the sweetness. When we first made this recipe, we had 8 pounds of tomatoes to use up quickly, so we made a huge batch of salsa. This recipe uses 4 pounds of tomatoes and is large enough for a party, so reduce if you want a smaller batch.
- 4 pounds Ivory Egg tomatoes, or other low acid tomato, chopped
- 1 medium Vidalia onion, finely chopped
- 1 large red Anaheim chili, finely chopped
- juice and zest of 1 lime
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt, or more to taste
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
- Combine the tomatoes, onion, and chilies in the large bowl. Stir in the salt, lime juice, and zest, then stir in the cilantro. Place a few sprigs of cilantro on top for garnish.