Saturday, 7 September 2013

Tomato beauty contest

If you are the sort of person who thinks that all tomatoes ought to be perfectly round, regular and blemish-free, then this post is not for you!

This tomato would pass the supermarket selector's test! Its an "Orkado" (no, not Ocado!)

Whilst chopping up a mountain of tomatoes the other day, it struck me that if you are making tomato sauce it makes no difference what shape your tomato is, since it is going to get pulped anyway.

I have put together a little collection of photos showing some tomatoes that are perhaps not what most people would consider beautiful. Which one do you think takes the prize for being the ugliest?:

The first contender is "Russian Black"

Next is "Red Pear"

Then there is this "Cherokee Purple" one

Maybe this double-decker "Zapotec Pleated"?

If you think those ones are oddly-shaped or ugly, wait till you see the REALLY ugly ones...

"Russian Black"

"Red Pear" - sticking its tongue out!

This is all one fruit. Why it is ripeing so irregularly is anyone's guess!

This is how they will all end up though:


  1. If I had such perfect small containers to put the salsa in, I would make some too. Love them!
    My favourite tomato is the one with the sticking tongue out; as if it says 'who cares you think I am ugly'.
    Funny post.

  2. I'm voting for Russian Black, though I have to say that I like to see ugly tomatoes, it makes a change from all the perfectly shaped, tasteless ones on the supermarket shelves. You've got a very nice selection.

  3. Oh Mark, I think they all look spectacularly awful!! haha!! Your sauce, however, does not. What do you think of the taste of these varieties you've shown compared to a nice cherry tomato? I've also grown the black russian this year and a shirley f1 and I must say I'm really disappointed with the taste. May as well have gone for a tasteless pack from the supermarket shelves, whereas my usual sugar plum are still far superior to anything I've ever tasted before. Really interested to know your verdict on the taste of the ugly tomatoes.

  4. Those are some ugly ducklings for sure but beauty is only skin deep as they say.

  5. That first Russian black looks as though it is taking part in a gurning contest. (I think that;s the right word).

  6. Wonderful! I saw a programme on supermarket food a while back, and they visited an Italian market where the tomatoes looked fairly similar to yours. They wouldn't touch our nice-looking supermarket tomatoes. I bet they taste great, and no doubt your tomato sauce is divine. I'm guessing you are growing them all in a greenhouse.

  7. Like you say they all end up the same way! Russian black is my favourite from your photos.

  8. The red pear looks like its gobbling up its own stem! What a creep :P They all look pretty ugly though, but I think the double decker ones look pretty cool!!

    Now just imagine if these were the photos that graced the covers of seed packets...probably a lot less buyers then (apart from the cheeky tongue sticking out one, that would sell to me!)

  9. Always amusing to see odd shaped fruit and veg and your right, it doesn't matter what their shape is a s long as they taste good.

  10. I once knew a man that resembled the Russian Black!

  11. I love that double decker tomato, that's the kind of thing I end up growing! Non-offensively I have to say the Russian Black is the ugliest!

  12. It's very true! We've been turning some equally 'interesting' tomatoes into chopped tomatoes for the freezer too.

  13. I think they're all rather beautiful Mark!! I particularly like the double decker ones and, like Anna B, would be really interested to know what you think of the taste of these large toms. Your last sentence, written with such satisfaction, was only missing a mad scientist laugh as you contemplate the annihilation of your tomatoes!! Enjoy!! C x

    1. Caro; I think the taste of the big tomatoes is great. It's almost the same as when you buy a big joint of meat - which is always better than two small ones! The texture is sometimes better too.


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