Purple Smudge Tomato: Hanna’s Tomato Tastings 2010

Part of Hanna’s Tomato Tastings 2010

The full name of this tomato is “Orange Fleshed Purple Smudge”, which wins the prize for the most literal tomato name and the longest tomato name I have ever heard of. It makes me think that the person who developed this tomato had absolutely no friends and family and no ego whatsoever. Come on, didn’t you have at least a Great Aunt Ester or something you could have named this for? I just call them Purple Smudge Tomatoes because it takes too long to say the WHOLE name.

Regardless, this will be a good tomato. I have this on the authority of the daughter of one of my adoptive plant parents. Eileen, age 8, tells me that these were “her most favoritest and very yummy”. Who am I to argue with an 8 year old?

The description from the company I bought it from reads:

These have a nice sweet, mild and fruit-like taste that make them good for snacking or cooking. Fruit weighing 4-10 ounces were produced in abundance and tended to get more purple as the season progressed.

The Beauty Pageant:

Size: Ranging from ping pong ball size to racquet ball size.

Shape: About half the fruit were almost perfectly round. The other half were just slightly flattened on top with just the faintest evidence of ribbing on top.

Color: True to their name, they have orangish yellow flesh with a bit of a purple smudge on top. Mine never got as pronounced a purple smudge as the ones pictured on the seller’s website, but it did get a slight purple smudge. The smudge was only on the skin and did not carry into the meat of the tomato.

The inside:Pretty tight gel and medium sized seeds. It has four chambers inside like many salad tomatoes.

Texture:Just a little on the mealy side. Not too terrible but you can’t say it is smooth.


Off the Vine Tasting: This is a smack you in da face tomato. When you first bite into it, it is really, really sour. The gel is almost as sour as lemons. You literally pucker your lips if you are not ready for it. The flesh though is really, really sweet, almost like melons. So, just about the time you recover from the sour, you realize that what you are eating is not sour at all anymore. It is sweet. I can see why my 8-year-old friend loves them. It is like a roller coaster for your mouth.

Sliced and Salted Tasting: Salt tones down the sour just a bit and makes it less of a shock. It does not interfere with the sweet at all.

Cooking Thoughts: Gosh, maybe in a salad, but your dinner guests would be in for a shock. Straight eating is fun.

Growing Notes:

Healthy plant and was able to survive early deer damage. It produced pretty late for me, but I attributed that to the deer damage. All my adoptive plant parents reported pretty early harvests.

Will Hanna grow this one again:

Maybe. The problem is that they are too small for the flavor. They very much are a standalone tomato. Putting this in other food is like laying down a land mine on a playground. I think the flavor complexity would be best appreciated as a side dish tomato – no embellishments, no distractions. But, those are typically a large beefsteak tomato. We will see in future years.

6 thoughts on “Purple Smudge Tomato: Hanna’s Tomato Tastings 2010
  1. Sweet & Salty? Sounds like my kinda tomato! Now if I could just remember the name next spring when I am ordering seeds…let me write that down somewhere I will remember.


  2. You really shouldn’t call this tomato just “Purple Smudge,” alas because it is a sport of a red tomato called Purple Smudge. Hence the name of “Oranged Flesh”. I do admit it needs a catchier name, and there are many gardeners who never even see the purple smudge because of growing conditions… but it’s still a very interesting tomato!


  3. I’m growing a couple of these plants this year and hope they do well. (I love Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds!!) Saying the name is a pain but writing it on my little ID plant marker (aka wooden craft sticks) was even worse!! Ha Ha!!


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