You can’t spell summer without a cherry tomato. These tiny, red fruits are the crave during the peak summer season as they are very delicious, flexible, and easy to grow.
If you have your garden and you’re into planting, you might want to pop in some cherry tomato plants in your garden because there are a LOT– and I mean a lot of dishes you can make with these tiny beings.
What Are Cherry Tomatoes?
You’ve probably seen them in your kitchen, but if you haven’t, cherry tomatoes are smaller than currant-type tomatoes or garden domesticated tomatoes. They go from thumb tip to golf-ball size and can be shaped spherical or oblong.
Like other tomatoes, cherry tomatoes are often red, but they can also come in yellow, green, and black (although these types are rare).
The difference between cherry tomatoes and your regular tomatoes is that aside from size, cherry tomatoes are perfectly round, while regular tomatoes are usually oval.
Also, regular tomatoes taste generally sweet and tangy, but cherry tomatoes are commonly slightly tart and sour. At the same time, regular tomatoes usually have more water content than cherry tomatoes which can be crispier to bite but juicy on the inside.
While regular tomatoes are usually used for cooking as cherry tomatoes are often snacked on, there’s no reason you can’t use cherry tomatoes in whatever form and pattern in your dishes.
What Are The Health Benefits of Cherry Tomatoes
These red, tiny fruits do not come in small benefits at all. Their tiny bodies are filled with Vitamin C, which is crucial in many bodily functions.
The lycopene content of cherry tomatoes helps in health issues like inflammation and blood clotting, lowering the risk for diseases caused by blood clots and blood flow to the brain, like ischemic strokes.
Another benefit of lycopene content in cherry tomatoes is gearing towards healthier bones, most especially alleviating osteoporosis. According to a study, women who consumed more tomato products filled with lycopene reported lower bone density loss than those who consumed less.
Promote Skin Health
Cherry tomatoes contain carotenoids, polyphenols, and antioxidants that help protect against harmful UV light effects on the skin by moisturizing and regulating signaling pathways. The primary carotenoids in cherry tomatoes are lycopene, and beta carotene helps aid this process.
What Can You Make With Cherry Tomatoes
Where else can you find a delicious, healthy, and flexible fruit to utilize in making simple snacks to complicated dishes? Here are some ideas for you to know what you can make with cherry tomatoes.
Cherry Tomatoes with Coriander and Rosemary
Preheat an oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and toss in your cherry tomatoes, garlic, rosemary, olive oil, coriander seeds, and salt on a baking dish. Then, turn garlic cut side down and roast tomatoes while tossing 2 or 3 times until golden brown or tender for 40 to 50 minutes. Let the dish cool and add vinegar.
Tomato and Feta Salad
What’s the best way to make use of a cherry tomato if not for a salad? In this recipe, just throw in vinegar, basil, salt, then add onion. Toss them to coat, and then let them stand for five minutes. Afterward, add the cherry tomatoes, oil, and feta cheese, and toss again to coat.
Cherry Tomato Salad
Another salad dish is a salad that’s made purely of cherry tomatoes. In a shallow bowl, fill it with your favorite cherry tomatoes. Whisk oil, vinegar, salt, and sugar together in a separate bowl until blended, and add fresh parsley, basil, and oregano. Pour the mixture over the tomatoes and toss gently to coat. Refrigerate and cover them overnight before eating.
Meat and Potato Kabobs
Cherry potatoes are also best paired with meat, as in this next dish. Sprinkle your beef with one teaspoon steak seasoning and garlic, then place on a bowl filled with a cup of cola to coat, then set aside.
Meanwhile, place potatoes and water in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave while covered until tender. Drain the potatoes and return them to the bowl. Add the tomatoes, pepper, oil, and remaining steak seasoning and gently toss to coat.
Drain the beef from the cola marinade and skewer the beef alternately with vegetables and pineapple. Grill the skewered dish over medium heat until beef has reached the desired doneness while turning occasionally.
How to Can Cherry Tomatoes
So, you might have tons of cherry tomatoes left in your garden or your kitchen, and you don’t know what to do with them. You can’t eat them now, but throwing them away is also such a waste.
At this point, there’s no better way to preserve your cherry tomatoes than to can them. But how do you can cherry tomatoes?
Canning cherry tomatoes whole are the best way to can them. They are small and bite-sized, so you’ll find no problem on how to can cherry tomatoes whole.
Raw Pack Method
The first method you can use is to raw pack them. What is a raw pack? This means that you’ll be keeping your whole cherry tomatoes in a jar, filling them with boiling water, and processing them with a water bath canner.
For this method, you would need a pint or quarter jars, lids and bands, water bath canner, lemon juice, medium-sized soup pot, canning funnel and tongs, lid lifter, de-bubbler, ladle, and oven mitts.
Prepare your cherry tomatoes by choosing high-quality and undamaged tomatoes to can. This is important because selecting bad tomatoes can affect the tomato’s acidity levels. Wash, run them in cool water, and remove stems, then pat dry them afterward.
On your canner, load the jars after you’ve removed any lids and bands. Fill the canner with water so you’d have at least one to two inches of water over the top of the jars. Do the same with your lids. This is to sterilize the jars. Simmer them for at least 10 minutes.
Fill your soup pot with water and bring them to a simmer until you are ready for canning.
Remove the jars from the canner after sterilizing them, then fill them with your cherry tomatoes. Remember to leave at least an inch or more of headspace and not fill them up because you’ll be adding some water later.
Add one tablespoon of lemon juice for a pint of the jar and two tablespoons for a quart of the jar. Then, ladle the hot simmering water onto your jars. Again, do not fill them.
Use the canning de-bubbler to remove the air bubbles from the jars. Then, wipe the jar clean and place the lids on it while securing it with a band.
Place the filled jars into the canner filled with boiling water and make sure that they are covered by at least one to two inches of water. Boil them for at least 40 to 45 minutes, remove the jar and allow them to sit for 24 hours. You can enjoy these canned tomatoes for up to one year.
How to Store Cherry Tomatoes
How long can cherry tomatoes last in the fridge? If uncanned, cherry tomatoes can last for ten days on the fridge at a 45 to 60 degree Fahrenheit temperature with a humidity of 95%. If they are stored below 41 degrees Fahrenheit, they could only last for five days.