Advertise with us!
Productos Agrícolas de México al Mundo
|Mexican Agricultural Products to the World
by David Peñaflor :Mexican Folklorist
The red tomato has in its name its Mexican origin. In the Nahualt language its name is Xitomatl, which could be translated as a "fruit with a belly button" in reference to the small hole or orifice that is formed when it is separated from the stem that supports the plant.
In our gastronomy it is present in almost all the cooked foods and it is indispensable in the salsa called "Pico de Gallo" which is prepared chopping and mixing it with onions and chiles japaleños. Soon after the conquest (Conquista) the jitomate was sent to España where it quickly became acclimated and soon enriched the Spanish food. From there it passed to Italy where it took a very special and indispensable place as a seasoning for pasta and the popular pizza.
At the beginning of the XX century, the cultivation of the jitomate increased in the United States becoming popular drinking it as a juice and mixed with alcoholic beverages, however, the most popular way of consumption has been the popular Catsup.
There are many variants of this food which belongs to the herbs family, Solanáceas,that characterize themselves for producing fruits shaped like half a dome, contain a lot of juice and pulp. The mot popular are Rutgers, especially for canned juices, Marglobe, which can be harvested even when green, we also have Stokesdale, very adaptable and great producer.
Another variety of this family of plants is the "green tomato or tomatillo" which is generally planted together with corn, this tomato is used in salsas or as peas in the famous enchiladas, tamales y green moles.
The calix of these plants have medicinal properties when boiled, an infusion is obtained which helps in the treatment of diabetes and bronchial tubes.
The variety of yellow tomatoes is called in Nahuatl Costomatl, besides been a food, it has medicinal properties since their roots ground and taken in a tea, help diverse gastrointestinal sufferings such as flatulence, colic and diarrhea.
To end my contribution, I want to invite the readers to reflect about the long way that the tomatoes travel before they reach your tables in whatever form they are presented. Behind the exquisite flavor, of the fruit from our continent, there are hours and hours of many farm hands that have cultivated and harvested it under the hot sun