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Old January 24, 2010   #1
durable_now
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Descriptions of this tomato is every thing from dwarf to indt so if anyone really knows what is correct please post
Thanks
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Old January 24, 2010   #2
icelord
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I grew this one out last year and it was a real good tomato, mine were indeterminate, and very productive. One of the few red tomatoes I like.
It was very tasty.

Icelord
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Old January 24, 2010   #3
darwinslair
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I have two types of it, one determinate with a rounded end, and the other indeterminate with a nipple end. Both taste exactly the same, just different growth habits and slightly different appearances.

Tom
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Old January 24, 2010   #4
brokenbar
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I find it laughable that this variety is touted as the "ultimate" drying tomato...too small, too many seeds and just speaking for myslef, flavor no better than the average cherry tomato. The Chef's I sell to have heard the "ultimate" claim and are willing to pay me THREE TIMES THE AMOUNT for these dried (there really is a sucker born every day....) I will concede they produce well and in less than ideal weather but if I did not have a market for these, they woudl have never been grown a second year. Personally, I would not waste the space. I have only had the indeterminate variety and it does not get real tall.
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Old January 24, 2010   #5
icelord
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Again , when you are talking about taste it really is about where you are and soil conditions. Mine were extremly tasty and were really one of my best cherries they produced great numbers and dried very well. I dont know about any over abundance of seed, I sure didnt have that problem. But there have been people on here that didnt like BlackCherry of all things.

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Old January 24, 2010   #6
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Yeah...that may be but for the bulk drying I do, they are a pain. I dry somewhere between a thousand pounds to 2000 pounds and it takes way to many of them to produce enough product. And mine are seedy as all get out which is not a good thing for dried tomatoes (the seeds are bitter.) They grow well here and produce like crazy but if I could not sell them for the money I get, no way. I grow no other cherry tomatoes nor do I grow anything that is not a meaty, dry, large, virtually seedless variety and primarily red, although the blacks dried are currently "in vogue" with chefs. I don't like tomatoes and don't eat them (in any way shape or form) so perhaps my palet is jaded. I was speaking from a purely personal business perspective. I would not know a "stellar tasting tomato" if it hit me in the head! I love to grow them but as for eating them...YUCK.
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Old January 24, 2010   #7
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Brokenbar, what tomatoes would you recommend as good for drying?
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Old January 24, 2010   #8
brokenbar
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I grow these:
Opalka
Chinese
Federle
Amish Paste
Carol Chyko
Denofrios German (these are HUGE-ripen early and have almost no seeds)
Leatha's Italian
Russo Sicilian Togeta
Big Black Heart (I received in trade, un-named-HUGE, Dry few seeds)
Sicilian Saucer
Memorial Polish Paste

I have about five hundred plants or more (always more.. ) I try at least 3 to 10 new varieties each year. They have to have large fruit, few seeds, dry flesh, ripen fairly early and be tough...we get a lot of wind and late spring cool nights in Wyoming. It takes so many ripe tomatoes to dry 1 pound of product, big and meaty are just absolutely the only way to go. I also soak my sliced tomatoes in Red Wine for 24 hours prior to drying and watery, seedy, less meaty tomatoes fall apart too easily in the soaking process.

Every variety listed above has passed muster and has become an official member of my "herd"! As I am moving to the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico this spring, I will probably have to grow entirely different varieties (a chilling thought....) But, I will certainly have a longer growing season!
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Old January 24, 2010   #9
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I've found it to be mostly determinate to semi-determinate. I agree with brokenbar concerning what a pain it is to cut each little cherry in half to dehydrate. As far as it's reputation as a drying tomato, my suspicion is that it was well suited to traditional drying methods in Italy. Plants were supposedly pulled with the tomatoes still on the vine and the whole plant hung in the sun. Considering that, it would be great, since most fruits ripen in a huge flush, and the tomatoes will hang on the vine FOREVER without deteriorating. They are seedy for me as well. Taste is not exceptional either fresh or dried, but they do make nice sauce.
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Old January 24, 2010   #10
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I forgot the Costoluto's...Genovese and Fiorentino. I grow these primarily for sauce...comes through the tomato mill practically ready to can but they also dry well and do well in any weather, even in the lousiest of years. They are NOT good fresh eating tomateos (I have this on good authority from my husband!) COoking somehow changes the flavor chemistry in these.
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Old January 24, 2010   #11
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I fully agree with your comments on Costoluto Genovese. The sauce is phenomenal. Tomatoes are supposedly high in the flavor component called umami. Saucing and dehydrating concentrates umami flavor. Glutamate has been identified as the organic component responsible for umami flavor in tomatoes, and it has been found that glutamate concentration varies with variables such as variety and ripeness. My suspicion is that c.g. would be high in glutamate, and that heating somehow activates or enhances it. As an interesting note, supposedly glutamate is concentrated most in the seeds and pulp. When making fresh sauce for myself I leave the seeds and pulp on. If i'm cooking for others I remove the skins. I'm growing several hearts this year plus Costoluto Fiorentino and another called Canestrino#1 which supposedly also tastes much better sauced than fresh.
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Old January 24, 2010   #12
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Very interesting! I know I have seen others on this forum refer to varieties that were nothing special to eat fresh but really good cooked. I have to leave in seeds when dehydrating...would have nothing left after removing them. As I said, I soak 1/2 inch slices in Red WIne for 24 hours and I need them to remain firm and come out of the soak mostly intact.
It is also interesting that the paste varieties have seeds that are much less bitter. I did a comparison test as my husband grows traditional varieties. Paste tomato seeds were much less bitter than the others. Now, I have read that the bitterness in seeds goes away after cooking but I have never tried that to see what happened. You know...there is another "Costoluto" whose name escapes me at the moment. I have been looking for a year trying to find it (There is a German Tomato Data Base that lists it.) They are just such superior saucing tomatoes. I have my own marinara recipe and I would never use another variety. Thanks again for the info...interesting that the "umami" can vary by variety.
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Old January 24, 2010   #13
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That would be Costoluto Catanese. I've been keeping an eye out for it as well with no success. According to the description on Reimers seeds, it is the oldest tomato variety in Europe, dating to the 16th century. Concerning umami, I've read also that the density of receptor sites on the tongue for umami varies considerably from person to person. I know some people have commented on C.G., Carolyn comes to mind, that they find nothing special with it's taste. For me, the difference is striking. Perhaps they have not had it as a sauce, or they are not as sensitive to umami. For those unfamiliar with umami, it is recognized as the fifth taste along with sweet, salty bitter and sour. It is the rich, delicious taste sometimes associated with things like veal or beef broth, aged cheeses like parmesan and mushrooms to name a few.
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Old January 24, 2010   #14
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PB has been a staple in my garden for years. It appears to be int. for me. And while maybe not the best, it hold up and kicks out a ton of cherries when nothing else will produce b/c of the high temps and/or humidity. Even the squirrels don't seem to bother them but why would they when there are one pounders just turning! Chomp. Mine have grown up to six feet, depending on the summer. Piegirl
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Old January 25, 2010   #15
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From what I understand, when drying PB, you dont slice it. I simply hang the full trusses in my basement from nails and they slowly shrivel up, never getting "crispy" dry, but not rotting either. They hold well to the vine and at least for me, end up being like large tomato flavored raisins. Juliet has this feature as well, but are not vine fast. Pretty much every other one of my tomatoes would rot if I did this, but PB do not.

Tom
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