Part of Hanna’s Tomato Tastings 2009
If tomatoes spoke, I imagine in my head that this one has a southern accent. Granted, according to its history, it would have a heavy Russian accent, but frankly, Tula does not sound like a cold Eastern Block city, but rather a warm and heavy aired US Southern city.
Regardless of where this tomato hails from, it is awful purrty. It even looks like a Southern Belle with all those ruffles. It even has ruffles on the inside. But the real question is if this tomato cupcake tastes as good as it looks.
The description from the company I got it from reads:
Russian heirloom that is a favorite black of many tomato aficionados. Unique, large 8-12 oz. dark tomato in a deep purplish-brown color.
The Beauty Pageant:
Size: Slightly smaller than the palm of my hand.
Shape: As mentioned, very rufflly. Ruffles on the shoulder which, when you cut it, are reflected on the inside. Makes for a pretty tomato on the plate.
Color: Brick red with green shoulders. The inside has dark red meat and dark green gel, which adds to the visual experience.
The inside: Medium size seeds with thin walls. Gel is juicy but solid.
Texture: The meat is mealy, but to be honest, the walls are so thin, there is very little meat to really ruin the mouth feel of the tomato. The smooth gel is really most of the bite.
Off the Vine Tasting: The initial flavor is strong. Very tangy and deep. It is the gel driving that. The meat is pretty bland next to the gel, but, again, there so little meat, that this is not an issue.
Sliced and Salted Tasting: Salt changes the flavor some by toning down the tang, but it is not by much. It does bring up the meats flavor a bit too, making it taste closer to the gel.
Cooking Thoughts: This would look pretty on a plate, but it is pretty small for a plated tomato. Defiantly good for salads, maybe a caprese salad. Not a saucing tomato as you need the gel to get the flavor.
Pretty healthy plant. Some lower leaf loss, but it is hard to tell if that was the plant itself or from raccoon damage.
Will Hanna grow this one again:
Maybe. The flavor is strong and nice. The only thing that is holding this back from a definite yes is not knowing exactly how to serve it regularly. I will have to think on that.