Tomato Festival extravaganza at Royal Botanic Garden

Everyone is welcome to celebrate the most popular ‘fruit’ in the world, the humble tomato at the Tomato Festival Sydney to be held in the Royal Botanic Garden on Saturday 1 and Sunday 2 February 2014 from 10am until 4pm both days, free and ticketed events.

Leading up to the event tomato lovers can test their cooking skills and enter their delectable delights into one – or all three of the following competitions which offer great prizes.

  • Tomato Passata Sauce Challenge
  • Tomato Relish/Chutney Challenge
  • ‘Best in Show’ Home-Grown Tomatoes
John McFadden, Group Executive Chef, Trippas White Group. He’s a judge and has provided some good cooking tips.

John McFadden, Group Executive Chef, Trippas White Group. He’s a judge and has provided some good cooking tips.

John McFadden, Group Executive Chef, Trippas White Group who oversees the menu and management of the Botanic Gardens Restaurant has provided some expert tips for a winning formula.

“To achieve the ‘wow factor’ in the flavour you need to reduce the pulp to the desired consistency.  We all love a little spice in life, the key word here is ‘little’, be careful spice does not dominate the tomato flavour, after all it is a tomato based sauce,” Mr McFadden said.

John McFadden will be a judge of the competition entries.

There will not only be glory, but wonderful prizes for the competition winners.  They include:

  • Six, nine-week Italian language course vouchers for 2014 from Co.As.It. – Sydney’s Italian language specialists located in the heart of Little Italy, Leichhardt
  • 1 year membership to Foundation and Friends of the Botanic Gardens
  • 2 x 2-year memberships to the Diggers Club
  • Signed book of Pietro Demaio’s Preserving the Italian Way
  • Botanically inspired gifts from the Garden Shop at the Royal Botanic Garden, Sydney

Applications for the Tomato Passata and Chutney Relish competition close on Friday 17 January, then you have the weekend to cook up a storm and deliver your masterpiece to the reception at the Royal Botanic Garden, Sydney on Monday 20 January.  Best in Show registrations close Thursday 30 January with delivery to the Garden on Sunday 2 February 9am until 12 midday.

Pietro Demaio who is giving cooking Masterclass lessons during the Tomato Festival Sydney.

Pietro Demaio who is giving cooking Masterclass lessons during the Tomato Festival Sydney.

Tomato Festival Highlights

In the festival program are children’s activities, themed guided walks, pop-up bar and café at the Rathborne Lodge, The Great Tomato Debate, cooking Masterclasses with Pietro Demaio, talks by Jennifer Stackhouse, Diggers Club, Grow It Local and horticultural experts from the Royal Botanic Garden, Sydney and much more.  Activities will be held in the Garden mainly centred around the Palm House lawn, Joseph Maiden Theatre, Charles Moore Room, and the Botanic Gardens Restaurant will hold a tomato-themed cocktail party on Friday, 31 January with tasty tomato delights, a DJ and music.

For more information about the Tomato Festival Sydney and competitions visit:  www.rbgsyd.nsw.gov.au

10 January 2014


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