And what, you ask, is a Creole tomato?
Would you be surprised to know that the Creole tomato has no pedigree or cultivar type? That the designation “Creole tomato” simply means it was grown in New Orleans? Sure, the LSU Agricultural Center developed a “Creole” tomato but it isn’t maintained by them any more and was never the standard as far as anyone was concerned.
N’awlins residents will tell you that a Creole tomato is a thick, meaty, wide and juicy, vine-ripened red tomato with a big crown. It has a smell and a texture unlike any other tomato – some say it’s the dark, fertile Louisiana soil that does it.
Creole tomatoes are grown on farms, in backyards, and even in patio pots but only in New Orleans and its’ immediate outskirts. A slice out of the middle of one might be bigger than the piece of bread you’re about to put it on. Lots of folks wait on tenterhooks for that first batch of vine-ripened Creole tomatoes to hit the market – then buy ‘em by the box.
Which brings us to the French Market’s Annual Creole Tomato Festival.
That first box of fat and juicy Creole tomatoes is traditionally offered up at the festival via public auction to local chefs, with the proceeds going towards the Children’s Hospital.
The high bid donation is always over $1000.
The French Market Annual Creole Tomato Festival is more than the auction, though, even more than the Creole tomato. It’s a celebration of Louisiana’s farmers, their produce, and the cuisine made from it that is such an integral part of the culture.
The French Market’s Creole Tomato Festival features:
- Cooking demonstrations
- The Creole Tomato Parade
- Farmers’ Market
- Food and Beverage booths
- Live music on two stages
Come out and enjoy sun, fun, music and local food and drinks like fried green tomatoes, Creole tomato bloody marys, Creole tomato shrimp salad, Creole tomato basil crepes, Creole tomato gelato, Creole tomato cream crawfish pies and other regional favorites!
The French Market Annual Creole Tomato Festival
June 7 – 8, 2014 – 10am to 7pm
For further details, please visit: www.frenchmarket.org/event/french-markets-annual-creole-tomato-festival/
Lodging for the French Market Annual Creole Tomato Festival
A tomato isn’t a Creole tomato unless it’s been grown in New Orleans soil just like a New Orleans visit isn’t complete unless you fully immerse by staying in a locally owned and operated, New Orleans bed and breakfast inn. Come get the real Big Easy experience – don’t settle for imitation.