If you’re looking to bring summer to your table on a plate, this tomato salad is perfect for you! Here is how to get the ball rolling to make the finest, tastiest, and most delicious salad for your next meal!
Choosing the Finest Tomatoes
A good tomato should feel heavy for its size and emit a sweet, earthy aroma near the stem. Seek out locally grown tomatoes at farmers’ markets and specialty markets. Opt for heirloom tomato varieties known for their juicy, flavorful flesh and range of captivating colors. Consider Early Girl tomatoes or Sungold cherry tomatoes to add visual appeal.
Preparing the Versatile Vinaigrette
The vinaigrette in this recipe serves a dual purpose by both macerating the red onion and dressing the salad. Here’s how to prepare it.
● 2 tablespoons red vino vinegar
● 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
● 1 teaspoon honey
● 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
● Whisk together the vinegar, mustard, and honey in a small bowl until the honey dissolves.
● Gradually whisk in the olive oil until well blended.
Crafting the Tomato Salad
Follow these steps to assemble and serve the tomato salad-
● 1/4 medium red onion, very thinly sliced
● 2 pounds ripe tomatoes, any variety
● 1 teaspoon kosher salt
● Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
● 1/4 cup fresh basil, chiffonade
● 2 tablespoons fresh mint, chiffonade
● Place the sliced red onion into the vinaigrette, allowing it to macerate while you prepare the rest of the salad.
● Trim the stem and base of the tomatoes, then cut them into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Halve any cherry tomatoes.
● Arrange the tomato slices on a plate or platter, seasoning both sides with salt and a sprinkle of freshly ground black pepper.
● Pour the vinaigrette and macerated onions over the tomatoes, gently nestling them into the dressing and ensuring even distribution of the onions.
● Scatter the chiffonade of fresh basil and mint over the salad.
● Taste and adjust seasoning if desired.
● Serve immediately and enjoy the fresh, vibrant flavors of summer.
A fan of Oriental cuisine, aren’t we all? Do try this authentic delicacy, that you’ll find wafting in every traditional Chinese kitchen cooked especially during the Dragon Boat Festival Celebration: Bamboo wrapped Sticky Rice called Zòngzi in Mandarin! Though it’s elaborate, treat it as a weekend project and you’ll be pleased with your results. For, once the elaborate Zongzi is ready, the rolls can be stored in the freezer, and steamed whenever you and your family would like a taste of this festival favorite.
Prep Time: 2 hours
Cook Time: 1 hour 40 min
Total Time: 3 hours 40 min
Ingredients: (to make approx. 1 dozen Zongzi)
30 – 35 bamboo leaves
3 cups of rice (glutinous)
For the Filling:
1 lb. pork belly / lean pork shoulder
3 Chinese sausages strings
1/2 cup shrimp (dried)
1 cup mushrooms (dried)
1/2 fried shallots (dried)
2 Tbsp. of cane sugar
1 tsp. of salt
1/4 tsp. of five-spice powder
1/4 cup of soy sauce (low sodium)
Step 1: Take Bamboo leaves and wash them thoroughly. Soak the bamboo leaves for two hours in hot water till they are soft. Wipe them clean and presto! They are ready to use. (We recommend starting a day prior to the actual cooking)
Step 2: Stir fry the rice using a little bit of water till it is fragrant yet not sticky.
Step 3: Cook the ingredients of the filling for an hour till the pork is fully cooked.
Step 4: Next, fold the bamboo leaves into a cone shape. Add some sticky rice at the bottom, put in a layer of the filling, and once again top with rice.
Step 5: Fold the leaf so that it is neatly sealed and tie it up together with cotton twine.
Step 6: Steam the bundles in a steamer for an hour and 25 minutes.
Voila, your delicious Zòngzi is ready! Open it and dive right in.