Quick Heirloom Tomato & Basil Salad

Quick Heirloom Tomato & Basil Salad

This classic, Italian tomato salad comes together in a matter of minutes.  Best of all, it’s a real crowd pleaser and is easy to make in big batches.  This is an ideal side dish for family gatherings or outdoor entertaining.

Sometimes, the simplest dishes are the most memorable.  This salad fits that bill.  During tomato season, it makes a nightly appearance at family dinners.  It is my way of honoring the succulent, vine-ripened tomatoes of late summer.

Quick Heirloom Tomato & Basil Salad | cookglobaleatlocal.com
This quick, 6-ingredient salad is simple, elegant and delicious. The best way to appreciate the season’s bounty.

I occasionally suffer from pangs of guilt because this salad is so easy.  It seems like a lazy addition to the table.  On guilty days, I’ve been known to add a crushed anchovy fillet or two to the sauce, tear up some bocconcini and throw them in, or even change the seasoning completely.  However, I never enjoy the tomatoes as fully as I do when the salad is in its simplest form.

I suspect I prefer the basic recipe because the ingredients complement one another so completely that nothing else is necessary.  Less is more.

A Note on Ingredients

The only trick to this recipe is to use tomatoes that are at their peak, extra fresh basil, top quality, flaky sea salt, and the best olive oil you can afford.  Like any simple dish with few ingredients, each ingredient stands out.  So, quality is key.  Bon appétit!


Quick Heirloom Tomato & Basil Salad

Quick Heirloom Tomato & Basil Salad | cookglobaleatlocal.com
Jeanette Marie
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Prep Time:  5 minutes - Cook Time:  30 minutes Servings:  6

This delicious salad contains only 6 ingredients and comes together in mere minutes. However, it bursts with summer flavors your family will love.

  • 1 kg (2 lbs) mixed heirloom tomatoes, washed and cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 2 teaspoons all-natural, flaky sea salt, or to taste
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or to taste
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed with the side of a chef's knife
  • 30 g (1 oz) fresh basil, washed and roughly torn or cut into chiffonnade
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, or to taste

  1. Place smashed garlic cloves in the base of a bowl. Add tomatoes sea salt, and black pepper. Toss to combine.
  2. Cover with cling wrap and set aside at room temperature for 30 minutes to an hour.
  3. Toss tomatoes once again. Taste and adjust salt as needed.
  4. Strew fresh basil over salad and drizzle with olive oil.
  5. Serve immediately with plenty of crusty bread to mop up the juices.

Salt: Flaky sea salt is important for this dish, because the larger salt grains help the tomatoes sweat and the juices are part of the pleasure of this salad.

Olive Oil: Do use the best quality olive oil you can afford. It will make and amazing difference in the dish's flavor and is worth the investment.

Nutrition label for Quick Heirloom Tomato & Basil Salad

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