Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself.
~ Leo Tolstoy
I’ve got to admit, I’m (just a little) salad crazy.
Are you salad crazy too? I know in the summertime it is quite common, when the greens are plentiful & dirt cheap and folks get hot and will do anything to avoid turning on the stove.
The truth is, I’m simply salad crazy all year long.
It doesn’t matter the season, you’ll always find salads in this house. Light fare leaves one still feeling limber after a meal, as nothing makes me lose my spark quicker than an over full (and over-taxed) stomach.
Don’t chase your dreams, catch them.
Today’s salad is a celebration of a classic. The tomato salad at its core is about as basic a salad as it gets.
Whether you use beefsteak, heirloom, romas, or tomatoes on the vine, take a few tomatoes, slice them up and you’ve got one of the best salads around. Here, I started with whole cherry tomatoes. Easy peasy.
A visit to the store will quickly tell you what tomatoes to buy. Buy them ripe, as ripe as you can while still being firm to the touch. These beloved healthy gems are one of those things that most people love, though there are a few folks I have met that simply don’t care for them.
Personally, I could eat them everyday, (and sometimes do).
There are the classic red tomatoes. There are so many kinds out there it’s crazy. Buy the ones that look the best to you. That way you know you’ll enjoy them more. It’s that simple.
Words have wings…so speak good things.
These orange beauties caught my eye, can you see why? They are so gorgeous, and right then and there I knew it was a tomato salad night.
Our family loves bocconcini, or fresh mozzarella balls, and Caprese salad is always a huge hit. Here is a sweet & simple version made with pearl bocconcini, but you can use what ever size you like (in tomatoes or bocconcini really). I like this as it incorporates greens into the mix – because really, why not?
Vegan? Hint: cube up some firm tofu the same size as the tomatoes and let it soak in the juice of half a lemon and a pinch of salt before adding to the mixture. Your results will look just as beautiful as this, without the added dairy. More easy peasy. More delicious.
The only thing I know, is that I know nothing.
Fewer ingredients means preparation in seconds. Fewer dressing needs means adding flavor with just a few splashes. Less need for complication means getting in the kitchen is easy, fun, and delicious, so your meal and the day to follow are yours to enjoy.
More tomato & basil means more summer flavors in your bowl. More simple dressing for salads means more motivation to make them. More easy beautiful food, means impressing friends with very little effort. And any incentive to do that is a win
Simple Tomato Bocconcini & Greens:
- (3-4) cups cherry tomatoes (mixed colors or all the same)
- (1) cup pearl bocconcini cheese (or equal amounts cubed raw tofu marinated in the juice of half a lemon)
- (4-6) cups clean salad greens of your choice, torn
- (2) tbsp good olive oil
- (2) tbsp balsamic vinegar
- (4-8) fresh basil leaves
- sat and pepper to taste
Simply wash your tomatoes and set them in a strainer to drain. Wash and tear the greens (arugula, lettuce, kale, sprouts) and set aside in a bowl.
Slice the basil leaves in thin ribbons. To ‘ribbon’ fresh basil, simply layer the leaves on top of one another and roll them into a roll. Slice the roll horizontally to get long thin uniform strips. These should be used immediately as they will discolor some once cut.
Drain the bocconcini and toss in a medium bowl with the tomatoes. When ready to serve, layer the greens at the bottom of a serving dish. Toss the tomatoes and cheese (or tofu) with the oil, vinegar, and salt and pepper to taste. Top the greens with the tomato mixture and garnish with fresh basil ribbons. Top with additional fresh pepper if desired.
Of course a salad so simple as this requires the freshest of ingredients.
Buy the freshest, perkiest lettuce you can find. Pick it from your own back yard, or have a good chat with the guy at the farm stand when you buy it. It might make you smile as you eat it. Then again, it might not. It’s all up to you.
To live at all is miracle enough.
~ Mervyn Peake
It’s also great just on its own.
Listen to your heart. Because wherever your heart is, that is where you’ll find your treasure.
~ Paulo Coelho
What’s your treasure?
We’re in serious countdown mode here at the IPOM world headquarters (teehee), 5 sleeps to go until we leave for Paris and the packing is almost done! We’re tying up details left right and center here.
I’ve had a good break in the past few weeks from anything too intense and am looking forward to a true holiday (I’ve just been warned about the lack of reliable wi-fi anywhere in France), and I’ll hope to be blogging as I feel inspired to share, so stay tuned for IPOM from France!
I’ll be looking forward to September too, when plans and new initiatives for Not So Fast will get in full swing once again. One thing is for sure, it is never boring
It’s a real journey, and one I’m so happy to share with you readers, as well as the amazing crew that have hopped on the bus to join me. I am amazed at the passion out there and it drives me to keep going everyday. Love & gratitude to you all.
- What’s your favorite version of Tomato Salad?
- Got a cause you’re passionate about sharing with us?
I’d love any links or add-ons to this super classic (and ever my favorite) summer salad, and to hear what really gets your gears going.
I always love to hear from each and every one of you, wishing you all a super swell few days!
Yours in Less,