(Photo Credit & Recipe: Radiogastronomy)
A recipe for Chorizo Stew called for fire roasted diced tomatoes. I typically just chop my own tomatoes and add spices, but this time I decide to splurge on a 28 oz can of Muir Glen Fire Roasted Diced Tomatoes marked with the USDA Organic Label.
The contents look pretty much like your basic can of diced tomatoes, with the addition of a bit of charring on some of the tomato bits. However, despite the high price I paid to get some fancy-schmancy "fire roasted" tomatoes, the roasted flavor is very slight, and barely noticeable compared to regular diced tomatoes. At $3.29 for a can, this is almost twice the price of conventional diced tomatoes, so you're definitely paying for "organic" here.
Each 1/2 cup (130g) serving of Muir Glen Fire Roasted Diced Tomatoes provides 30 calories, no fat or cholesterol, 290 mg sodium (12% of the daily value), 1 gram protein and 6 grams of carbohydrates which includes 1 gram of fiber (4% of RDA) and 4 grams sugar. Each serving also provides 10% of the RDA for Vitamin A and 35% of the RDA for Vitamin C.
At first I was impressed by the ingredient list, which names only five components: organic fire roasted tomatoes, organic tomato juice, sea salt, naturally derived citric acid, and calcium chloride. However, comparing this to a can of non-organic RedPack Diced Tomatoes at half the price, their ingredients are remarkably similar: tomatoes, tomato juice, salt, citric acid, and calcium chloride. Sure, the tomatoes in Muir Glen's version are organic and fire roasted, but otherwise, the taste is basically the same.
I noticed very little difference in flavor or consistency between this and conventional non-roasted diced tomatoes, and I think there are better things to spend my money on.