When you learned to ride a bike, you had training wheels to make sure you didn't scrape your knee or immediately fall over onto the lawn. That's how I see cherry tomatoes.
The tiny, sweet fruit is a great way to work your way up to the thick dinosaur of the tomato world -- the beefsteak tomato. Those mothers -- which will likely be at market in a few weeks -- can clock in at over a pound apiece. So starting with a tomato the size of a marble is how you train yourself to tackle the beefiest tomato.
The cherry tomato is one of my favorite raw vegetables. A quick rinse and the sweet, little globes are ready for eating. When it comes to selecting a pint at the store or farmer's market, just look for firm tomatoes that are not dried out or smushed.
You can make an easy cherry tomato pasta or salad simply by adding mozzarella and a drizzle of balsamic and olive oil. If you're making pasta, throw in some chopped basil as well. Or go in a different direction; The Lawrence Journal-World recently broke down the tomatoes at market and included a recipe for a yellow pear and cherry tomato salad.
If you're a baker, this savory cherry tomato cobbler sounds interesting. If you're a drinker, I'm not sure what to think about Mary's Fruit -- a gin-based cocktail in a cored-out cherry tomato. And if it's been awhile since you had a cherry tomato, it's time you got back on that bicycle.
[Image via Flickr: orangeacid]