By Michelle Fabio
In Santorini, Greece, among the volcanic ash and dramatic white villages overlooking the deep blue Aegean Sea, you will also find one of the most revered tomatoes on the planet–the Santorini cherry tomato.
Aside from tasting wonderful, these tomatoes have been found to have more Vitamin C than an average tomato and more lycopene than any fruit or vegetable.
Rather appropriately, this tiny tasty tomato–some say you could actually confuse it with a cherry–first came to Greece in 1818 from a holy source, an abbot from the monastery Kapoutsinon. In nearly 200 years, this variety hasn’t changed in the least, not even through a hybrid.
The tomato’s blessed history continued after the Bolshevic Revolution when tsarist Russian churches closed. As there was no longer much of a need for Santorini’s famed Visanto, the red wine used in Communion, the island started pushing its other unique product: the tiny tomato.
Unfortunately an earthquake in 1956 damaged much of the land on which the tomatoes had been growing. On top of that, increased tourism on the island–Santorini is one of Europe’s hottest vacation destinations–means that fewer and fewer farmers produce these tomatoes.
And so, with increased prices, Santorini tomatoes have become a kind of delicacy even on their home island.
If you’re lucky enough to find some and need some great recipes with Santorini tomatoes, go here.
Source: The Santorini Cherry Tomato