If you were to ask me my favorite season, summer would not be top on the list. I know, its crazy. But I just am not a fan of the heat. Give me a spring breeze or a winter snowfall any day over sweating just walking outside. But the one thing that makes summer awesome? All the produce! Even with the year round variety here in Texas, my CSA deliveries are never as varied as they are in the summer months. This week I got blueberries, baby acorn squash, corn, mushrooms, arugula, garlic, and best of all, tomatoes. You’ve never really had a real tomato until you have a locally grown, in season, ripe heirloom or grape tomato. All those year round artificially grown ones in the store pale in comparison to the summer tomato.
Tomatoes are full of juicy nutrient goodness. A single medium tomato has 22 kcal and 5 g carbohydrates. But those little calories are packed full of micronutrients. Tomatoes contain over 5% DV of vitamin A, vitamin C, folate, vitamin K, and vitamin B6. They are also a good source of minerals, including iron, magnesium, potassium, manganese, and copper (source).
Thanks to their rich, colorful hues, tomatoes are full of antioxidants, especially the frequently mentioned lycopene. These antioxidants help protect skin cells against sun damage, promote eye health, and maintain strong bones. They are also linked to the reduced risk of many cancers.
Try a new spin on the standard tomato recipes with one of these hearty meals.