Daily Israel Report

Israeli Tomato "Raisins" Go with Chocolate

An Israeli innovation, the raisin cherry tomato, is so sweet that it actually tastes good with chocolate.
By Elad Benari & Yoni Kempinski
First Publish: 12/1/2011, 2:46 PM

Tomatoes and chocolate seemingly do not go together, but an Israeli innovation may prove otherwise – if you dare to try it.

One of the presenters at the IsraFood expo taking place in Tel Aviv is 2Macho, an Israeli company run by the Baranes family.

The Baranes family began growing a special kind of tomato in 2004 in southern Israel. They have come up with something called a raisin cherry tomato.

“This tomato is an Israeli innovation,” explained 2Macho owner Yehuda Baranes. “The innovation is that it has microscopic holes and when it’s dried, the water comes out of the microscopic holes, in contrast to a regular cherry tomato which is sealed and in order to dry it, it is cut in half.

Baranes said that his tomatoes are good for use in pasta, salads, sandwiches, and anything else one can think of.

“Until today people would take a regular cherry tomato, cut it in half, and then dry it. This one, on the other hand, stays whole and it maintains its nutritional value. It has five times as much lycopene, it has twice as much B1 and B2 as a regular tomato, it is fleshy. You add some spices to it and it’s excellent.”

The chocolate-covered tomato is a unique twist on 2Macho’s tomatoes, and it is made possible because the raisin cherry tomato, as Baranes explained, is mostly sweet, going perfectly with the chocolate.

“We’ve gotten great reactions so far, for both the chocolate covered tomatoes and the spiced tomatoes,” he said. “The tomato does the job. By the way, this is a quality tomato. It has no preservatives.”