The summer season is in full swing, which means many things - warm weather, parties, picnics and vacation. I get really excited for great summer fruit and vegetables. Man, there's nothing like a fresh, juicy, perfectly ripe peach. Then there's the tomatoes. Sure you can eat tomatoes all year around, but I feel like for about 10 of those months, I have to go into the archives to remember what a tomato really tastes like when biting into the dull, red orbs. There's just a few week window when the tomatoes have a sweet and all encompassing flavor, and when that hits, I buy, buy, buy.
One of the quintessential tomato preparations includes pairing an in-season heirloom with basil, and mozzarella. Those are 3 besties if there is such hierarchy in the food world, and I do believe there is. They can make a nice presentation all sliced and neatly stacked, but sometimes I don't want to do the work and the positioning for the perfect bite. I want everything already cut and mingling, so I like creating more of a prepared salad. I throw in some mint for an extra pop of freshness, and swap out the mozzarella for feta for a little added saltiness. You can serve this as a stand alone side salad, pile it on top of toasted bread as an appetizer, or throw it next to grilled fish or chicken. It's a great summer staple.
Tomato Basil Feta Salad
Serves 4 as side dishes
- Pint of cherry tomatoes cut in half or 2 large heirloom tomatoes, cored and diced
- 6 ounces of feta cheese, crumbled or cubed
- 2 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
- 1 tablespoon fresh mint, minced
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil
- 2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar
- Combine all ingredients in a bowl, holding the feta cheese until last. Toss everything together, and then gently fold in the feta and serve.