The San Marzano Tomato Trap

If the label doesn't say "D.O.P.," you're S.O.L.
If the label doesn't say "D.O.P.," you're S.O.L. Photo: Mary-Louise Price

Over at the Gusti Blog, we are painfully reminded that 95 percent of all “San Marzano” tomatoes are, in fact, not San Marzano tomatoes. This might not come as a shock to those of us who have followed the knockoff Italian food scandals of the past, but plenty of people are still sadly being duped. Here’s the deal: San Marzano tomatoes of course have to come from Italy, they can only come in tins, and the tomatoes can only be peeled whole or fillets. If you see the words “puree,” “sauce,” “chopped,” “diced,” or “organic” on the labels, they are phonies. Confused over your own pantry now? Just send a picture of the label on your alleged San Marzanos to the Gusti gang, and they’ll ask the experts for you. [Gusti Blog via Diner’s Journal/NYT]

Related: ‘Italianissimi’ Project Will Crack Down on Faux-talian Foods