Jamie's Ultimate Tomato Salad
Have you read anything by Calvin Trillin? In one of his essays, he describes his usual lox and bagels shopping excursion: Russ & Daughters for the fish, another place for fresh cream cheese and a third stop for bagels. It seemed kind of insane to me, to go to three different shops, endure three really long lines, to buy just three ingredients. Why not go to a super-mega-store and pick up everything, plus an electric grill and some swim goggles?
Well, yesterday I found myself on a Trillin-esque shopping trip and I realized I have come to understand. If you're going to pull off a meal this simple, with so little prep work involved, the ingredients should be the best you can find. Tomatoes and basil from the farmers' market, fennel salami and aged cheese from the Italian grocers, a nice loaf (this is a ciabatta) from another food shop. It's a perfect meal on a hot day.
All you really have to do is mix up some dressing and slice some tomatoes.
I followed this recipe to make the tomato salad, slicing 2 colorful tomatoes and layering the slices with torn basil leaves.
I like to add a little mustard to my dressing to help it emulsify. This is 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar mixed with 2 teaspoons mustard, some salt and grinds of black pepper. Then I whisk the mixture while slowly drizzling in 3 tablespoons olive oil. I drizzled this over my tomatoes and served with good bread, salami and cheese. (My favorite part is wiping up the mingled vinaigrette and tomato juices with a piece of the bread.)
I have tons of basil left over, so pesto is next on my list of things to make.
Video: Easy Tomato & Cucumber Salad | Episode 1175
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