August 3, 2010
Tomatoes, tomatoes, tomatoes...
I have become obsessed with tomatoes. My husband is one of those who would rather go to the dentist than eat a raw tomato (even though he loves salsa - go figure). When I finally accepted he wasn't going to give them a try I gave up. I stopped buying them at the farmer's market and only picked them up at the grocery store when needed. Well that was until we joined Grow Alabama. The weekly CSA deliveries have been overflowing with tomatoes. We have had heirloom, hybrid, cherry and varieties that I really had to see to believe (aka green zebra). The taste of a farm fresh Alabama tomato is unbeatable.
I had a night to myself last week and decided tomato salad was for dinner. There is no need for a formal recipe, because basically I used what was around & the outcome was delicious. I alternated slices of heirloom tomato (2, marinated) with slices of grilled eggplant (one small), several dollops of light blue cheese dressing, topped with crumbled turkey bacon (2 slices), fresh basil, okra croutons & S&P. This was my entire dinner, but the proportions would be perfect for two as a side dish. The okra croutons are simply the frozen breaded, sliced okra. I bake them in the oven at 375 for about 40 minutes just coated in cooking spray (we eat this all the time as a side). I think what really kicked this salad up was that I marinated the tomato slices in a dressing of balsamic & champagne vinegar, salt & pepper and fresh basil for about 30 minutes. As I said no recipe is needed because at this point the marinated tomatoes could stand alone as a great salad, and even better with a little goat cheese.
I have also learned tomatoes should not be refrigerated & stored stem side down. Hope you enjoy!!!