Friday, February 3, 2012


Purple Tomatoes
Hmm...not sure what to think about this.  Oregon State University researchers have developed a new tomato:  It's purple, deep, deep purple, and is being called "Indigo Rose".  It will be available through several seed catalogs as well as appearing soon in a store near you.  The purple color comes from anthocyanins.  It was bred to contain high levels of this, because it is a great antioxidant...and where does this come from?  It's the same antioxidant in blueberries, and is what gives that fruit their deep blue/purple hue.

You can read about it by CLICKING HERE.

Why create a tomato with the same thing when you could just eat blueberries?  Apparently it's because it's so healthy and good for us, they figured it needed to be bred into something that is so widely tomatoes.  I'm not sure how many people will switch out red tomatoes for purple ones in their salads but it's definitely interesting.

No word on taste or how much they will cost...

Purple Tomato, Photo Courtesy of:
Thomas Patterson/SMJOU Statesman Journal via AP
Near as I can tell, they aren't genetically modified, or engineered, they are bred using cross pollination with other wild varieties.  Still, not sure what I think about  these types of 'experiments'.  I'm 110% against anything genetically modified, but if we create something using cross pollination, albeit over and over until we get the traits we want, is that right?


Sue said...

I won't ever eat them. I'm so old-stuck-in-my-ways--this color is just "wrong" to me. I don't even buy the heirlooms that are bizarre colors. I mean -some of them I wouldn't even know when to pick because they don't "look" ripe. I'll stick with my plain old Brandywines. They are the best tasting to me!

Frugal Living UK said...

I also wonder how necessary it is to do this, there are enough varieties out there already.
I must admit that I like the colours though! A few years ago I grew some tomatoes in pots around the outside of my old flat. One of the varieties I grew was called the black russian. It grew and it grew and it grew but all it produced was one single large beautiful dark tomato, the colour of old dark mahogony. Just one tomato mind. I picked it like it was the crown jewels and made it the centrepiece of a mozzarella and tomato salad and it was gorgeous! I will do that again this year.

Frugal Living UK said...

I just commented but it seems to have been swallowed up. Will try again, but apologies if it appears twice.
I was saying that I am also not sure about this sort of experimentation, after all, there are enough beautiful, natural varieties of tomatoes about to worry about creating new things.
Having said that I do really like the colour. a few years ago I grew tomatoes in pots around my old flat. One of the old varieties I grew was called the Black Russian, and it grew and grew and grew, but all it produced was one single beautiful dark tomato, very big and the colour of dark old mahogany. I picked it like it was the crown jewels and then sliced it and made it the centre of a mozzarella and tomato salad. It was gorgeous and I am hoping to grow it again this year.

1st Man said...

We have tried the heirlooms and love them but I can totally hear ya about the look and not telling if they are ripe, ha. Brandywines? I've always wondered if those were a good garden tomato, thanks for the heads up!!

1st Man said...

The color is gorgeous huh? I'd love to see one sliced open. It looks like an eggplant or something. Yeah, I'm with you on the "do we really need another one?". A Black Russian? I'll have to look for those. I had an heirloom salad at a restaurant once that was amazing. Might just have to try a few in the garden.

Alison said...

As someone who loves tomatoes and does not like blueberries raw, this would be a great way for me to get my antioxidents. I wouldn't mind trying one just to see and then make a decision.

1st Man said...

Alison that makes perfect sense. I forgot some people might not like something, and if what they don't like is full of nutrients, getting them in something else would be a good thing!