Two Tomato Salads (B-)

August 17, 2006 at 6:17 am (C (2 stars, okay, edible), Italian, Jack Bishop, Quick weeknight recipe, Salads)

It’s the peak of tomato season here in sunny Pennsylvania, and so of course I pulled out my Complete Italian Vegetarian cookbook by Jack Bishop. It seems that every other recipe in that cookbook requires fresh tomatoes, so most of the year many of the recipes are out of reach. Not so in August!

There are two tomato salads that caught my eye. The first was tomato salad with black olives, capers, basil, and oregano. I didn’t have fresh oregano so used a bit of dried and extra basil. I also probably used less olive oil than called for. The end result tasted fine, but didn’t excite me. I thought that the briny olives and capers overwhelmed the tomatoes. The flavors really didn’t come together.

The second salad was tomatoes, red onion, basil, and vinegar (half red wine, half balsamic). Again, I wasn’t excited. This time the flavors weren’t too strong exactly, just not really any better than eating plain tomatoes.

Now, I’m thinking that to some extent the result will depend on the tomatoes you use. I was using “heirloom pinks”, which are sweet but not very acidic. Perhaps with a more acidic tomato these salads would work better?

If anyone has any advice please let me know. I’d really like to make a heavenly tomato salad before the season is up!

Rating: B-

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