Lightly salted tomatoes: The Russian way to keep summer in your food (RECIPE)

While we’re preparing these tomatoes for winter we can’t resist enjoying them immediately!

While we’re preparing these tomatoes for winter we can’t resist enjoying them immediately!

Yulia Mulino
This Russian snack has long been used both as a starter and an appetizer – lightly salted tomatoes are sure to win your heart.

Are you familiar with the habit of setting aside something delicious for later? Thanks to the old tradition of preserving summer fruit and vegetables for colder seasons, Russians are well aware of how to store up food as part of  their winter supplies. 

Preserving tomatoes is usually considered a good way of disposing of an excessive harvest and diversifying your meals in winter. Nowadays, this reason no longer exists since you can purchase a variety of tomatoes in supermarkets all year long. Yet, people in Eastern Europe keep doing this. Why? Because summer tomatoes are sweeter, and have richer taste and flavor.

There are quite a number of ways to make the brine for salted tomatoes. Traditionally, vegetables were preserved only by means of fermentation. They are called solyoniye or kvasheniye. Fermented tomatoes are not only delicious but also healthy thanks to the good bacteria in the process. To make your tomatoes spicier and give them a particular flavor you can add vinegar, which might reduce the natural processes. These tomatoes are called marinovaniye, the Russian word for “pickled”.

We invite you to try these quick semi-salted tomatoes. Ready to be served in 24 hours, they are sure to become your favorite! Best served with young boiled potatoes.

Ingredients for a 3/4 liter jar:

  • Water - 500 ml
  • cherry tomatoes – 500 g
  • salt - 2 tsp
  • sugar - 1 tsp
  • garlic - 5 cloves
  • bay leaves
  • coriander seeds
  • thyme
  • allspice


1. Wash tomatoes and greens.

2. Make the brine by adding salt, sugar, allspice, and coriander to water. Let it boil and turn the heat off.

3. Puncture each tomato through the stem to allow the brine to permeate the tomato.

4. Cut the garlic. Place the greens, tomatoes and garlic in a sterilized jar and fill up to the top. 

5. Pour hot brine into the jar; then close it.

6. Wait until it cools and put the jar in the fridge. Wait 24 hours and then you can enjoy the lightly salted tomatoes.

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