White Wonder Heirloom Tomatoes
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|Food Buzz: History of Heirloom Tomatoes|
White Wonder tomatoes are creamy-white oblate shaped beefsteak tomatoes that weigh about 1-2 pounds. The meaty flesh has few seeds and is also yellowish-white in color with high sugar content and low acidity, creating an exceptionally sweet melon-like flavor. The bushy indeterminate plants grow to an average of 5 feet tall, and they have good foliage cover to protect the fruit. As an indeterminate variety, the White Wonder tomato plant will continue to grow and produce good yields of the large tomatoes throughout the season right up until frost.
White Wonder tomatoes are available in the summer.
White Wonder is a beefsteak-type tomato, characterized by large, heavy fruit and thick, meaty texture. Tomatoes are members of the Solanacae or nightshade family and they are botanically known as either Lycopersicon esculentum or Solanum lycopersicum, as new DNA evidence has led some horticulturists to re-adopt the original classification. Like all heirlooms, White Wonder is an open pollinated cultivar, meaning that saved seed being passed down through family generations grows true to the original parent type.
Tomatoes are well known for their exceptional antioxidant content, including their oftentimes-rich concentration of lycopene, which has been studied for its role in fighting some types of cancer. Tomatoes contain a great dose of vitamins A and C, as well as vitamin B and potassium, which are effective in reducing cholesterol levels and lowering blood pressure. Tomatoes are also a good source of iron and calcium.
White Wonder tomatoes have a high sugar level and are deliciously sweet, making them great for fresh eating. They add a beautiful contrast to veggie trays alongside other colored tomato varieties. As a beefsteak-type tomato, they are great for slicing onto sandwiches, burgers and salads, and they are also a good variety for canning. Try using them to make a white tomato soup or white tomato sauce. Tomatoes pair well with savory herbs and soft cheeses, and they can also be combined with sweet herbs, like mint. Store White Wonder tomatoes at room temperature until fully ripe, after which refrigeration can slow the process of decay.
White Wonder tomatoes were brought into the spotlight when they became one of the varieties chosen for Alice Waters’ famous Chez Panisse restaurant in Berkeley, California. Chez Panisse opened its doors in 1971, and is known for sourcing ingredients that are organically and locally grown and ecologically harvested to protect the land for future generations.
The White Wonder tomato is an old American heirloom believed to date back as far as pre-1860. Some even suspect that Thomas Jefferson planted this variety at his home in Monticello. Like all tomatoes, White Wonder tomatoes cannot stand any frost, and they are sensitive to low night temperatures. They are said to do best in USDA hardiness zones 3-9.