The D.O.P Certification
To distinguish whether or not the “San Marzano Tomatoes” you are buying from your local store are truly authentic and from the precise region and the right strain of tomato, they are put through a rigorous certification process. This strict process is followed to protect the designation of origin rights so that when someone buys San Marzano Tomatoes they get what they expected. Similar to Champagne or Prosecco, it is about the region it comes from.
DOP Denominazioned' Origine Protetta meaning Protected Designation of Origin. To receive the certification, tomato farmers must follow multiple, specific guidelines. Starting with the seeds of the tomatoes, they must date back to the original strain of San Marzano tomato. They cannot be genetically modified in any way. The tomatoes also must be grown in the Sarnese Nocerino area of Italy, with specific all-natural farming practices. They must be harvested at a specific point by hand when the size, shape and color are up to regulation. Lastly the tomatoes are peeled when packed and kept whole or cut in half but are not chopped or diced. They are packed into cans only and not into jars which helps to distinguish them from imitations. All the work that goes into these certified DOP tomatoes is the reason they are prized so highly. That is why many cans at your grocer may not have the official Italian certification stamps. They may not have wanted to go through all the different measures of certification, have GMO tomatoes, were grown in other parts of the world, or any number of other reasons. That is why the farmers that put in the effort to follow these guidelines want to have their products protected from being grouped in with tomatoes of lesser quality. (Read the full list of regulations here) Tomato producers that want to sell similar tomatoes may call them San Marzano or Italian Style tomatoes to distinguish them. These tomatoes are not truly from the Sarnese Nocerino area; commonly they are grown throughout the US or somewhere else in the world.
Our San Marzano Tomatoes are packed with the natural tomato juice, to ensure their taste remains fresh and full of flavor. San Marzano are famous for their tender texture, mild acidity and smooth finish. The flavor from tomatoes comes from the jelly/juicy insides that surround their seeds. These tomatoes have a full and firm pulp with a low seed count which means more of that yummy jelly inside. The flesh is taken off so that the tomatoes are already prepped to be made into a smooth sauce. That is why many recipes call for canned San Marzano tomatoes because those with skins need to also be peeled. Other companies may pack their cans with tomato purees that have been created from lower quality tomatoes and commonly considered to hinder the taste. It is important to understand the differences in the many varieties you may find at grocery stores to find the combination that is perfect for you!
How are Isola's San Marzano Tomatoes Grown and Packaged?
Watch the process of planting to packaging our San Marzano Tomatoes, and what the Isola difference truly is!
How to Use Them?
For many chefs the sauce to a dish such as pizzas, pastas or meats is the key difference between a good meal and a gourmet one. If you overlook the star everything is not being risen up. So their key ingredient is San Marzano Tomatoes!
1. Roasted Tomatoes
2. Classic Marinara Sauce
3. Neapolitan pizza
4. Homemade Tomato Soup