Our recent blogging respite gave us time to enjoy the spring weather and think about the seasonal transition of our menus. One of our favorite spring/summer dishes is our adaptation of Marcella Hazan’s, Garlic Scented Tomato Salad. We serve this as an appetizer course presenting the tomatoes on a large platter with a large crusty baguette so that everyone has enough bread to sop up the dressing, oil, and juices on the platter. Simply divine!
Prep time: 15 minutes.
Total time: 40 min-overnight.
For the dressing:
5 to 8 garlic cloves
1 tsp. kosher salt
2 tbsp. quality red wine vinegar
Quality Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1. Muddle the garlic cloves in a thick glass with the kosher salt.
2. Add red wine vinegar and mix well until salt dissolves.
3. Cover glass with saran wrap and set aside at room temperature at least 20 minutes. We prefer steeping at least 3 hours to overnight.
Prior to serving, slice your tomatoes and place them on a serving platter with an edge to keep dressing and oil from spilling over. We prefer an arrangement using a variety of tomatoes: Kumato, Plum, Grape, and Round−all in a variety of colors to make the platter more visually appealing. Let your creativity shine! You can make it as simple or as ornate as you want. After you are done arranging your platter, strain your garlic-scented vinegar over the tomatoes through a sieve. Try to distribute evenly, but if you can’t, no big deal. Simply tilt the platter to ensure even distribution of dressing. Top with a healthy pour of extra virgin olive oil. Add little clusters of basil to the platter to give it a bit of aromatic green, or you can chiffonade the basil over the entire platter. Just make it pretty (grin).