Thursday, August 12, 2010

Tomato salad, inspired by Jamie

Tomato salad a la Jamie / Tomatisalat Jamie ainetel

It's august and we're eating tomatoes on a daily basis. Not just excellent local, seasonal, organic tomatoes, but local, seasonal and organic tomatoes from our own little greenhouse. Considering the mishaps (I put the seeds down in way too late - in late April, I overcrowded the greenhouse, not all seeds and young plants made it), we can already say that we've had a pretty impressive first crop. Hopefully it's not just beginner's luck :D

We have about 20 different tomato varieties growing (mostly one container plant of each), so there's a lovely variety of shapes, sizes, colours, textures and flavours. Here's a tiny selection of our tomato crop, picked last weekend:
We went to see friends and brought along some vegetables from our garden / Läksime sõpradele külla oma aiast korjatud külakostiga

So far we've been enjoying tomatoes raw - in salads, on top of open sandwiches, or simply eating them out of our hands (our daughter is especially fond of all the tiny cherry and plum tomatoes!). Here's a simple tomato salad that has a superbly concentrated tomato flavour because of the flash-salting process - a tip I learned from Jamie Oliver's book "Jamie at Home".

Tomato salad
(Oma aia tomatisalat)
Serves four to six

Tomato salad a la Jamie / Tomatisalat Jamie ainetel

about a kilogram (just over 2 pounds) of ripe tomatoes - preferably of different sizes and varieties
one or two red onions
sea salt
fresh (flowering) oregano

2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tsp good-quality balsamic vinegar
a small garlic clove, crushed
freshly ground black pepper

Wash all the tomatoes, pat dry. Depending on their shape and size, cut them into halves or quarters or thick slices. Place on a large colander.
Peel and halve the onion(s), then cut into thin slices. Add to the colader.
Sprinkle generously with sea salt flakes, then toss the tomatoes and onions slightly. Leave to season and drain for about 15 minutes (no need to collect the salty tomato juices). The salting flavours the tomatoes, but also concentrates the flavour and 'dries' out the tomatoes a little, so you'll end up with extra tomatoey flavour!
Place the tomatoes into a large bowl, sprinkle with (flowering) oregano.
Combine the dressing ingredients and drizzle over the salad. Season with extra black pepper and serve.

5 comments: said...

Truely excellent ideas ;)

Nash Nordin said...

The salad looks really good. The recipe is simple and easy too!

Merit said...

Love the flash-salting idea. I know people should generally use as little salt as possible, but I'm hopeless when it comes to tomatoes - they just don't taste the same without it:)

Kat said...

ha, the tomato-junkie in me nods appreciatively and claps :D

liisu said...

Seda salatit olen ma teinud korduvalt, superhea!