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The Great San Marzano Tomato

By: Calvin Mayne | VP of Food
On: February 27, 2015

In cold weather, we crave savory food. Maybe these feelings crop up from childhood memories, or perhaps the simple desire to warm up. Maybe it’s both. Remember getting all bundled up to go sledding or build a snowman? You come back wet and cold and Mom is waiting with warm tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwiches. Or you’re out for a day of spring skiing and you join a pack of gnarly snowboarders at the lodge for a bowl of hearty beef stew and thick sliced crusty bread. It’s the same theme: you’re cold, the food is hot, mix in family and friends, and it adds up to a warm experience.

These particular foods just mentioned are related, although it may not be apparent at first. They all share the so-called fifth basic taste, often described by the Japanese word umami, which essentially means “savory.” The key ingredient that gives you that particular sensation on your palate is the amino acid glutamate, which naturally occurs in foods as diverse as Parmigiano Reggiano, beef, soy sauce, mushrooms, and cooked tomatoes. Combine a few of these ingredients in the same dish and all that umami adds up to lots of yummy. That’s why we love lasagna, for example…beef, cheese, cooked tomatoes…you get the idea. It’s no wonder then, that if you look inside the pantry of most any chef or good home cook, you will see at least a couple of cans of tomatoes. Good canned tomatoes, indeed, are a direct ticket to lip-smacking savory dishes of all sorts, especially where slow simmering is involved, which increases umami.

Over the years we have been very careful about what we offer you with the DLM name on it. We do offer excellent canned local tomatoes under our DLM label, and we sell truckloads of them. Yet consider another canned tomato that is from the other side of the world, and it’s extraordinary. We love it so much we sourced a producer that agreed to put our name on it: DLM San Marzano Tomato of Agro Sarnese-Nocerino area D.O.P.

The long name authenticates this as the real article from Italy. It’s grown in the area of Sarnese-Nocerino near Mount Vesuvius, south of Rome. Our tomato carries the “D.O.P.” designation, an Italian acronym Denominazione D’Origine Protetta, or “protected denomination of origin.” In short, the integrity of this special product is protected by Italian law.

Our DLM San Marzano Tomatoes are a bit softer, but fresher and sweeter, and less salty than other tomatoes, allowing you to properly season your dish with salt as you cook. They are easy to work with as well. Once you try them, you may decide to use them in all your dishes that call for canned tomatoes...be that chili, homemade pizza, pasta Bolognese, tomato soup, baked ziti, and so on. Always have a few cans ready to go in your pantry, and you’ll be making your kitchen a guaranteed source of good eating for you and your loved ones.