Heirloom Tomato Salad with Gorgonzola, Mint & Basil

It's little wonder that in the giant world of recipes there are a plethora of heirloom tomato salads. I am adding mine because it is simple and fresh and I love it.

If you glance at the recipe, you will notice that there is very little balsamic and oil in it--one tablespoon of each. That is just enough to lightly coat the tomatoes. They are so good on their own that all they need is a very light sprinkling of a few ingredients to turn them into a delightful salad.

You can make the salad with whichever heirlooms are available and are ripe. For appearance, choose a variety of shapes and colors. You can also substitute whatever cheese you like. Goat cheese is always a good choice. 

Salt is an important element in any tomato salad, because it helps bring out the tomato's sweetness.  Before serving, I always sprinkle raw tomatoes with coarse salt.  Coarse salt refers to sea or kosher salt and it has a larger grain than common table salt.  Coarse salt is not saltier than regular salt, but it gives the impression that it is. That is because when you bite into it, It makes a dramatic impact on your tongue. It can make a dish taste saltier and more well seasoned simply because the flavor hits you more upfront.  

I hope you enjoy the salad as long as heirlooms are so plentiful and please let me know how you like it. 

2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
¼ cup crumbled gorgonzola
1 tablespoon capers, drained
1 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
2 cups assorted heirloom baby tomatoes, cut in half if large
1½ pounds assorted heirloom tomatoes
Coarse salt

  1. In a medium-size bowl, mix mint, basil, gorgonzola, capers, balsamic and oil. Add baby tomatoes and toss to coat. Refrigerate for at least one hour.
    MAKE AHEAD: Tomatoes may be refrigerated up to 6 hours. Toss well. Bring to room temperature before serving.
  2. As close to serving as possible, but not more than one hour ahead, cut some of the large tomatoes into wedges and slice some about ¼-inch thick. Arrange them on a baking sheet lined with paper towels. Sprinkle the tomatoes with regular salt and let them sit for 10 minutes. This helps draw out the liquid and increases their flavor. Blot lightly with paper towels and add them to the baby tomatoes; toss gently.
  3. Arrange the tomatoes on a platter or individual plates. Sprinkle with salt and pepper

Makes 4 servings.

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