“The obvious distinguishing feature of a yellow tomato is the color, which may be anywhere from an almost creamy yellow to bright, electric, school bus yellow, depending on the cultivar, the time of year, and when the tomato is harvested. Like their red cousins, they also come in an assortment of sizes, shapes, and flavors, from tiny sweet ones that can be used in salads to big yellow beefsteak tomatoes that are ideal for sauces.
The difference in color is not just superficial. The nutritional profile of these tomatoes is slightly different from that of red ones. Yellow tomatoes have lots of niacin and folate, less vitamin C, and less lycopene than red tomatoes. Perhaps most importantly, they are lower in acid than red tomatoes, and some companies have even developed almost acid-free varieties.”
“The confusion about ‘fruit’ and ‘vegetable’ arises because of the differences in usage between scientists and cooks. Scientifically speaking, a tomato is definitely a fruit. True fruits are developed from the ovary in the base of the flower, and contain the seeds of the plant (though cultivated forms may be seedless). Blueberries, raspberries, and oranges are true fruits, and so are many kinds of nut. Some plants have a soft part which supports the seeds and is also called a ‘fruit’, though it is not developed from the ovary: the strawberry is an example.”
“As far as cooking is concerned, some things which are strictly fruits, such as tomatoes or bean pods, may be called ‘vegetables’ because they are used in savoury rather than sweet cooking. The term ‘vegetable’ is more generally used of other edible parts of plants, such as cabbage leaves, celery stalks, and potato tubers, which are not strictly the fruit of the plant from which they come. Occasionally the term ‘fruit’ may be used to refer to a part of a plant which is not a fruit, but which is used in sweet cooking: rhubarb, for example.”
“The term “Heirloom” applied to plants was apparently first used by Kent Whealy of Seed Savers Exchange, who first used “heirloom” in relation to plants in a speech he gave in Tucson in 1981. He had asked permission to use the term “heirloom” from John Withee, who had used the term on the cover of his bean catalog. John said sure, that he had taken it from Prof. William Hepler at the University of New Hampshire, who first used the term “heirloom” to describe some beans that friends had given him back in the 1940s.”
“According to tomato experts Craig LeHoullier and Carolyn Male, heirloom tomatoes can be classified into four categories: family heirlooms, commercial heirlooms, mystery heirlooms, and created heirlooms. They are grown for a variety of reasons, such as historical interest, access to wider varieties, and by people who wish to save seeds from year to year, as well as for their taste, which is widely perceived to be better than modern tomatoes. They do, however, have a shorter shelf life and are less disease resistant than most commercial tomatoes. Furthermore, some scientists have suggested that heirloom tomatoes are no more natural than commercial ones, and that many are simply “inbred” tomatoes.”