rory

30 Dec 2011 549 views
 
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photoblog image Dark and Mysterious

Dark and Mysterious

                                                     BELOVED TOMATO - THE SCANDALOUS FRUIT - Continued


It would be difficult to imagine Italian food without the tomato, or Mexican food without salsa - a wonderful condiment first enjoyed by the Aztecs.  The tomato, though first thought to be purely decorative before being tried - with trepidation - for culinary purposes, was later banned by the Church of Rome for being 'the devils fruit' and a sinful indulgence.


The tomato is a  member of the nightshade family and is not a vegetable at all but the berry fruit of a vine native to South America and was known to the Aztecs who called it xitomatl, a generic word for any globulous fruit such as berries. Eventually it made its way further north into the Central Americas who dubbed it tomati and to the Yucatan  where the early European explorers first encountered it. 

 

From there (later Mexico), Spanish conquistadors sent it back to Spain  where it was not accepted as edible but viewed with great suspicion as poisonous, as were various other members of the nightshade family such as the mandrake,  potato and aubergine (eggplant).  

 

However, there were those who believed this enticing, bright red fruit had aphrodisiac powers, as did the French, who called it pomme d'amour  or love apple though this is believed to be an alteration from the Spanish pome dei moro or apple of the moors. 

 

Naples in the 16th century  was a still a Spanish possession and it was they of course who introduced the tomato to Italy, who soon called it pomodoro or golden apple referring most likely to the earliest specimens that were yellow or bright orange.  The Spanish, by the way, also introduced other New World products such as chocolate, tobacco, potatoes and maize, from which polenta is made.

 

Many years later red tomatoes were taken to Italy from the Americas by two priests.   In the early 1700's in America, a Jewish-Portuguese doctor introduced tomatoes unsuccessfully claiming they were from the original Garden of Eden's Tree of Eternal Life and if eaten in sufficient quantities, would give immortality.

Dark and Mysterious

                                                     BELOVED TOMATO - THE SCANDALOUS FRUIT - Continued


It would be difficult to imagine Italian food without the tomato, or Mexican food without salsa - a wonderful condiment first enjoyed by the Aztecs.  The tomato, though first thought to be purely decorative before being tried - with trepidation - for culinary purposes, was later banned by the Church of Rome for being 'the devils fruit' and a sinful indulgence.


The tomato is a  member of the nightshade family and is not a vegetable at all but the berry fruit of a vine native to South America and was known to the Aztecs who called it xitomatl, a generic word for any globulous fruit such as berries. Eventually it made its way further north into the Central Americas who dubbed it tomati and to the Yucatan  where the early European explorers first encountered it. 

 

From there (later Mexico), Spanish conquistadors sent it back to Spain  where it was not accepted as edible but viewed with great suspicion as poisonous, as were various other members of the nightshade family such as the mandrake,  potato and aubergine (eggplant).  

 

However, there were those who believed this enticing, bright red fruit had aphrodisiac powers, as did the French, who called it pomme d'amour  or love apple though this is believed to be an alteration from the Spanish pome dei moro or apple of the moors. 

 

Naples in the 16th century  was a still a Spanish possession and it was they of course who introduced the tomato to Italy, who soon called it pomodoro or golden apple referring most likely to the earliest specimens that were yellow or bright orange.  The Spanish, by the way, also introduced other New World products such as chocolate, tobacco, potatoes and maize, from which polenta is made.

 

Many years later red tomatoes were taken to Italy from the Americas by two priests.   In the early 1700's in America, a Jewish-Portuguese doctor introduced tomatoes unsuccessfully claiming they were from the original Garden of Eden's Tree of Eternal Life and if eaten in sufficient quantities, would give immortality.

comments (4)

Excellent macro! Gorgeous color and light, simply perfect. I am getting hungry look at these tomatoes. Happy New Year Rory!
Rory Ingle: Thanks Frances and Happy New Year to you too, you will be hungry after the next one ;-)
A wonderful image, Rory - I love the color and contrast. More fascinating info on the wonderfruit!
Rory Ingle: Hi Elizabeth thanks very much, this was an unplanned theme but I will end it tomorrow smile.
Hooray for the Aztecs!
Rory Ingle: so say I smile
Superb image Rory. The lighting is perfect here!
Rory Ingle: Thanks Richard, I enjoyed doing this.

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camera Canon PowerShot S95
exposure mode full manual
shutterspeed 1/1000s
aperture f/4.5
sensitivity ISO160
focal length 6.0mm
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