It’s always tomato season with Backyard Farms; this farm grows year round. Based out of Central Maine, there are 42 acres growing 4 tomato varieties that supply Whole Foods and some Chef Networks in the area. One of these restaurants, is Nebo in the Financial District. Originally, Nebo was nestled in the North End but recently moved to expand into a larger space. The restaurant is run by the Pallotta sisters. How amazing and inspiring that these two ladies, once spa and salon owners, took a leap of faith and opened a restaurant. Their Italian background didn’t hurt, particularly because they brought a lot of what they ate into this kitchen and incorporated family recipes into plates.
Aside from getting together to share a wonderful meal with other foodies in the city, Backyard Farms brought us together to taste the new Somerset Pink tomato. It had been in the making for 2 years. The EVP of Backyard Farms, Tim Cunniff, detailed that it was like a beefsteak tomato so the texture is robust for salads and sandwiches, but it has higher sugar content than most other beefsteak tomatoes.
Lunch began with a sample of these Somerset Pink tomatoes, accompanied with Burrata, Saba, EVOO.
The sisters came in and checked on us many times through lunch; what a treat! They had some great stories to tell. One was the story of their bread.
There’s a saying that goes something along the lines of “it runs in the family”. This is the case for the below potato bread called “Mama”. The yeast for this addictive bread has been kept alive by the Pallotta family for over 100 years.
The bread is made by cooking the potato and thereafter broken down and incorporated into the dough. One of the reasons why the bread is called Mama is because when they would feed the dough, they would sing the song Italian song Mama. In between moving from the North End to their current location, they had to keep the dough alive and the Pallotta sisters detailed that they researched and were meticulous in finding a way to keep it alive to have it here with them at the restaurant.
The bread paired wonderfully with the sweetness of the tomato jam. Our table couldn’t keep their hands away. I know I had one too many, but it was so worth it. We wanted to take this home with us!
The jam incorporates Vine Ripe tomatoes, Saba, Chili Powder, Ginger, Cumin, and other secret ingredients. The sisters wouldn’t detail more! People are seriously lining up for this stuff. Hopefully, they’ll bottle and start selling it soon!
Next was a platter of Salumi Misti: Prosciutto di Parma, Mortadella, Finocchiona Salami, Coppa, Speck.
It truly felt like an Italian meal as the plates kept coming. Up next was the Spaghettini with Backyard Farms Cocktail Tomatoes, Capers, Olives and EVOO. This dish is also referenced as Christina’s Breakfast Pasta. Christina mentioned she isn’t a big breakfast fan but would definitely opp for this in replacement.
Veraci in Brodo: Baby Clams from Italy, Finicchiona Salami, Ceci beans, Backyard Farms Cocktail Tomato.
Even though we were stuffed by this point, everyone tried a piece of the Pizza Bianco: Backyard Farms Beefsteak Tomato, Prosciutto Cotto, Ricotta, Mozzarella, Arugula, and Parmigiano.
Seriously, this was such an incredible experience. Between great food, company and the stories behind the dishes, I think I can say for everyone that they were perfectly full from the lunch selection. I am so happy that we got some samples of the tomatoes for home. I certainly plan on utilizing them for a recipe in the near future.
Backyard Farms tomatoes can be found at Whole Foods all over New England, mainly in New Hampshire and Maine. Their cute packaging makes them hard to miss! Thank you Backyard Farms and Nebo for having us in. This is a meal to not be missed!
520 Atlantic Ave
Boston, MA 02210