This is one of the easiest summer salads to make. We love the beautiful colors of fresh tomatoes paired with fresh basil and the sweet and salty flavors from the pantry .
This is a salad that we make during summer when fresh tomatoes are plenty. During the peak of summer indoor cooking is kept to a minimum. The abundance of fresh produce and an outdoor grill is all that you need to make a lovely meal in no time at all. A salad like this will take only 5 minutes to make.
It is so easy that even the kids can assemble it. Let the little guys and girls have some fun other than being glued to the screens.
Summer’s bounty comes together in this salad. Fresh colorful produce needs little or no enhancements. This is not the only summer tomato salad I make, but when you get as gorgeous produce as these colorful tomatoes you would rather let these speak for themselves.
Ideally I would like to have the freshest of fresh tomatoes for this as in just plucked from the yard or bought from the farm stand. But when I came across these heirloom beauties at the store I could not resist. There was a bunch fresh basil nearby as well. The colors were absolutely irresistible.
If you have a basil plant in the back yard or on the porch this is the time to run to it and get a few leaves. I have one indoors for the winter , but it is not doing so well this year. So had to resort to this bunch is from store ..
These were so beautiful I wanted to keep the look intact as much as possible . Just slice them into discs and half the work is done ?
Normally this would have been a recipe for Caprese salad but there are times when I prefer to have a non dairy option . And this was one of those ..
See the beautiful color contrast . When something looks so pretty do not go messing around with it. Trust me when I say this – nature has much more experience in this department.
You need ripe but firm tomatoes for this recipe. If the tomatoes are over ripe use them to make a sauce or soup not in a salad.
The good thing about this dish is that it is perfect for a backyard barbeque or a potluck . You can slice the tomatoes and mix the dressing a few hours in advance, but I would assemble it just before serving.
NEED MORE SUMMER RECIPES ?
- Watermelon Agua Fresca – an easy refreshing cooler
- Strawberry frozen yogurt – just 3 ingredients
- Brazilian shrimp Stew
- Roasted vegetable picnic loaf
- Pasta Salad with Grilled Vegetables
I made these with heirloom tomatoes , but any firm sweet tomatoes will work great here. Beef stake , roma take your pick. The key to getting it right lies in fresh ingredients – use extra virgin olive oil and good balsamic vinegar. You could substitute red wine vinegar or avocado oil if you like , but no refined oils please.
The dressing is a simple vinaigrette of olive oil and balsamic vinegar with a touch of garlic. Adjust these to your preference. I like to sprinkle a some capers on top for an added burst of flavor.
Use these tomatoes in your burger and see the difference . I for one can just have these between two slices of bread or pita bread and call it a meal – but that is just me.
So here is how to make these pretty garden tomato basil salad.
Garden Tomato Basil Salad
- 3 – 4 Tomatoes Medium to Large
- 1/4 cup Fresh basil Leaves
- 2 Tsp Capers Nonpareil in brine
- 1 clove Garlic Finely Minced
- 1 Tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
- 2 Tbsp Extra virgin olive oil
- Fresh Ground Pepper
- Slice the tomatoes into ¼ inch thick discs.
- Mince or grate the garlic finely. Add to a small mixing bowl. Mix together with balsamic vinegar and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Taste and adjust.
- Arrange the tomatoes on a serving plate. Roughly tear the basil leaves and scatter over the tomatoes.
- Before serving pour the dressing over the tomatoes, and sprinkle the capers on top.
- Use as much or as less vinaigrette as needed . Refrigerate any leftover and use within 3 days.
Important: Values are only estimates. Actuals vary depending on ingredients and serving size.