Eat Indigo Rose Blue Tomatoes
Old and new blue too
Grow something new in the garden this year. Like a blue tomato or a blue and ivory bean that looks like a modern art project. Or, grow a beautiful blue heirloom eggplant, possibly grown by your Italian great, great grandmother.
Try Blue Indigo tomato, only released a couple of years ago. Dragon Tongue beans are flat and curly, strange enough to even bring a kid to the table. Rosa Bianca eggplants are one of the most beautiful and mild.
The first high anthocyanin tomato
The new blue food: Indigo Rose tomato
This is a new tomato. Indigo Rose organic tomato is an open pollinated, indeterminate. It's a small tomato which usually ripens in 70 days. Indigo Rose is a new release from Oregon State University.
Jim Myers, dept of horticulture, OSU has been working on this selection for ten years. He is using traditional plant breeding techniques for this organically grown indeterminate.
These dark fruits are 1-2 ounces each. Nichols offers Indigo Rose as the first high anthocyanin tomato. This tomato is still under study and offspring of Indigo Rose will have additional traits.
What are Anthocyanins?
Anthocyanin pigments are responsible for the red, purple, and blue colors of many fruits and vegetables. From fighting cancer to fighting wrinkles, anthocyanins are regarded as one of the best reasons to eat deep colored fruits and vegetables. Food scientists and horticulturists are interested in these compounds because of their importance to the color quality of fresh and processed fruits and vegetables.
Indigo Rose was the first ripe tomato on the table. Ripe Indigo Rose tomatoes are beautiful. These little tomatoes are about 1 1/2 inches across. The tomatoes turn dark blue where the direct sun shines on them. The shaded side of the saladette tomatoes is orange.
End of season - As foliage declined and more of the tomato was exposed to the sun, the bluer the tomatoes turned. The final few I picked, were as blue as blueberries.
The novelty of a blue tomato is why I grew it. Perhaps I am spoiled from all the old fashioned taste of the heirlooms I grow.
Another similar sized tomato with rich tomato flavor is Riesentraube - Best heirloom tomato from seed.
Eat blue food
Find tomato seed here
Buy a packet of tomato seed, it will last for two or three years. Or, buy plants and save your own seed at the end of the season. There are many other companies offering Indigo Rose plants or seed. I only mention these because I've done business with them, service was prompt. I got what I paid for.
Nichols Garden Nursery is in Albany, Oregon. Phone - 800-422-3985. Nichols Garden Nursery is an independent family business serving home gardeners for more than 60 years.
Johnny's Selected Seeds helping families, friends, and communities to feed one another by providing superior seeds, tools, information, and service. Call us toll free at 877-Johnnys (877-564-6697).
Other blue or lavender produce
Dragon Tongue snap beans wispy lavender stripes on creamy colored bean pods are as tender and tasty as any green bean.
Rosa Bianca Teardrop shaped eggplant. An old Italian heirloom.
Rosa Bianca Eggplant
More blue vegetables: Rosa Bianca eggplants
One of the prettiest blue foods of the season is Rosa Bianca eggplant. Despite the foliage being savaged by flea beetles all summer and fall.
An Italian heirloom that has passed down garden to garden for generations. It may become a regular in your garden. Each eggplant grows to 5-6 inches long. Fruits are plump, tear drop shaped and very mild tasting.
Rosa Bianca eggplants are tender and not bitter. The tear drop shaped fruits can be used up in a meal or two. A much better choice for a small family than those big black beauties.
To Grow: start indoors or direct sow seed 1/2 in deep into full sun location.The plant produces creamy white with lavender eggplants from midsummer to hard freeze in the fall. Plants grow to 2 1/2 feet tall and should be planted about 2 1/2 feet apart.
To Serve: Try roasting with herbs instead of frying in the eggplant parmesan recipes. Perfect for ratatouille.
I will grow these eggplants again. They are tender and not bitter. The tear drop shaped fruits can be used up in one small dish, a better choice for a small family than those big black beauties.
Where to buy Rosa Bianca seed
Are you a blue food fan?
Why do you eat blueberries?
Very green "beany"
Dragon Tongue bean
This is not just a novelty. However, I first bought these Dragon Tongue beans (Dragon Langerie) at the local Farmers Market but doubted the raves of other customer. It was so good, I'm growing more in my garden this year.
Dragon Tongue is tender and tasty eaten fresh as a snap bean. A little over two feet tall, it is easy to pick and so tender and tasty. If they get past the snap stage, Dragon Tongue beans are also good as dried beans. Some gardeners grow the light brown beans only as a shell bean.
To Serve: Harvest flat snap beans when they turn from lime green to soft yellow with bright purple stripes. Use in any recipe just as you would green beans. To dry, allow pods to fully mature.
Dragon Tongue is very highly rated among home gardeners and market growers. This is an old French heirloom, but it was new to me. I'm glad to have discovered it.
Where to buy seed
Eat blueberries to reduce blood pressure
If you regularly eat blueberries your chances of suffering from hypertension (high blood pressure) may be reduced by 10% because of their bioactive compounds – anthocyanins.
Indigo Rose tomato
Anthocyanins may lower blood pressure
Anthocyanins provide the bright red-orange to blue-violet color found in fruits and vegetables. They are the natural plant compounds found in the form of glycosides. Glycosides occur when an anthocyanidin molecule is paired with a sugar molecule.
The most abundant source of these compounds are found in berries such as black currants, elderberries, blueberries and strawberries and in their juices. Anthocyanin-rich foods include blackberries, blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, plums, red cabbage, red onion and blood orange juice.
According to researchers in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. If you regularly eat blueberries your chances of suffering from hypertension (high blood pressure) may be reduced by 10% because of their bioactive compounds – anthocyanins.
One in every three adults in the USA has hypertension. People with high blood pressure have a greater risk of developing heart disease and stroke.
Anthocyanins are part of a parent class of molecules called flavonoids, which are odorless and flavorless. They give foods a moderately astringent sensation.
Flavanoids are present in many teas, fruit juices, dark chocolates and red wine, and have been shown to reduce risk of cardiovascular disease.