Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Tomato, Goat Cheese and Basil Salad

I made this salad a couple of weeks ago when sharing a meal with friends during our trip to Deltaville, Virginia. Summer tomatoes had not yet made their way to the North Carolina mountains, but roadside stands overflowing with ripe tomatoes, corn, and squash were everywhere in coastal Virginia. I have a number of tomato salads that I make regularly during tomato season, but this is the one I've been making the longest. The original recipe, "Tomato, Montrachet and Basil Salad" is published in The Silver Palate Cookbook by Julee Russo and Shelia Lukins. The cookbook was published in 1979. My copy was a Christmas gift from my dear friend Jeana in 1987 so I am guessing that I've been making this salad for around 20 years. You can tell from both photos that the cookbook has been well used!

One of my dinner guests in Deltaville asked for the recipe so I decided to make it again to post on the blog. Here is my slightly simplified version:

Tomato, Goat Cheese and Basil Salad

  • 6 large ripe tomatoes, cored, cut into thick slices and then halved
  • 1 medium red onion, halved and sliced thin
  • ½ cup basil chiffonade
  • ¼ cup pitted Nicoise olives, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons Italian parsley, chopped
  • 1/3 cup best quality olive oil
  • Dash of red wine vinegar
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 6 ounces goat cheese
  1. Add the tomatoes, onions, basil, olives, parsley, olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt and pepper to a bowl. Stir gently to combine.
  2. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.
  3. Just before serving, crumble the goat cheese over the salad and gently stir to combine.
Yield: 12 servings
Prep time: 15 minutes

I made the salad with some golden heirloom tomatoes from a roadside stand I pass on my way up the mountain, and basil from my garden. I'm not wild about the photo, but the salad was fab served with grilled shrimp and squash kabobs.


Guinnah said...

this looks so good Lynn. I have some beautiful tomatoes from our CSA, basil in the garden and goat cheese in the fridge. Perfect timing! I love the cookbook photos...well used and well loved!

Warren said...

This was an awesome salad in Deltaville. Thanks so much for sharing it with us.

Lynn said...

This is one of Will's favorites -- hope you enjoy, Nancy. Do you have that cookbook? It is one of the few that I have had for forever and go back to again and again.

Warren -- make it for Susan!

Guinnah said...

Lynn - I had that cookbook forever and never made this recipe. When we remodeled and I lived without my books for months on end I think I got rid of this one after taking note of my favorites. Anyhoo...made it tonight and we LOVED it. I added some capers Huge hit. Plan on blogging it myself and will link back to you. Thanks for sharingg!

carbonara said...

After Marchella Hazan's cookbooks, that was the one we used at home growing up in the US. Great book. there are times when the tomatoe and basil are fresch but you just don't have (or have had too much) good, fresh mozzarella.
So caprino or another goat cheese is a great alternative.
Guinnah's innovation of capers sounds great too. I love capers.