Tomato is an integral part of the everyday product of residents of Tajikistan. Under the word tomato Tajiks understand boiled or dried tomatoes. Usually tomato is used in the winter and spring period because there are no fresh tomatoes in the country or they are very expensive.
The people of Tajikistan use tomato, adding it mainly to soup. In other cases, tomato is rarely used. It is needed mainly for giving red color and a little tomato flavor in dishes.
As previously said tomatoes are of two types:
- Liquid (tomato paste) – which is cooked on fire for 3-4 hours and looks a bit dense. Such tomatoes are prepared in rural areas and taste good. Some families eat such tomatoes by oiling them with bread. The price of such tomatoes is 2-2.5 dollars (18-20 somoni) per kilogram;
- Dry (dried) – such tomatoes are prepared by drying tomatoes in the sun. About 50-60% of Tajikistan’s population consume dried tomatoes (tomatoes). Preparation of such tomatoes does not have special forces and costs, unlike liquid ones. Because in order to cook dry tomatoes you need only tomatoes cut to dry them in the sun in the open sky for 2-3 weeks. The taste of dried tomatoes is not very pleasant, but their preparation is much easier. The price of dry tomatoes is about 40 somoni per 1 kilogram (2017years).
Tomatoes are also made from Bulgarian pepper, which can be replaced to impart color and special flavor to dishes. But such a product is not called tomato. It is called Bulgarian pepper, which can be found in shops and bazaars both in dried form and liquid (pasta) form.
Tomato pastes can be found in almost all stores in the capital of Tajikistan (Dushanbe) or other cities of the country, but alas dried tomatoes or Bulgarian peppers can only be found in bazaars. As you noticed liquid tomatoes (pastas) are consumed by the inhabitants of the city, and dried usually by the inhabitants of rural areas.
In the country there are several factories that make tomatoes but many of them are in a deplorable state. For example, a canning factory in the city of Kulyab, in the city of Gissar, Istravshan, Penjikent, etc. In a general country, there are 50-60 canneries, half of them in the Sogd region. Totally a year, the inhabitants of Tajikistan use about 50 -70 tons of tomatoes.