Joshua Spodek’s Heirloom Tomato Salad

[Photo by Diane Hu]

[Text by Lynn Wolsted]

The last lazy days of summer are the perfect time for trips to the beach, barbecuing with family and friends, and my personal favorite, heirloom tomatoes! Heirloom tomatoes typically come into season around late July and are ripe and luscious all through the month of August. You can use them in lots of dishes but my personal favorite is a simple salad. No muss, no fuss, but extra tasty and delicious! These babies are packed with vitamin A and vitamin C, not to mention they also provide a good amount of fiber.

Josh Spodek agrees and was kind enough to share this simple heirloom tomato recipe at Slideluck’s Photoville event.

Josh say’s that the trick to heirloom tomatoes is getting them at the peak of ripeness at the end of the summer. He likes to slice them thick, put a little olive oil on them and sprinkle them with some salt. Sometimes he puts a little vinegar  on them too. He warns to eat them carefully because the juice is the tastiest but most delicate part, so you don’t want to lose it.

Side note: When you’re dressing your salad just add enough olive oil to coat the tomatoes, if you drown the tomatoes in too much olive oil and vinegar you loose track of the sweet and succulent heirloom tomato morsels! I personally like to use aged balsamic vinegar in my tomato salads and finish with salt and pepper to taste, then add basil. You can use any kind of herbs as tomatoes are very versatile. For a new twist try adding fines herbs: tarragon, parsley, chives and chervil. Your taste buds will thank you.

The best part about heirloom tomatoes is you can do anything with them! You can slice them up and put them on a nice crusty, out of the oven baguette and eat them with a creamy piece of brie cheese, or you can add them to your favorite pasta dish letting the sweetness of the tomatoes marry in perfect harmony with the aromatics. You could even slice them and put them on top of a piping hot margarita pizza. I’ve even had them as a sorbet.

So next time when it’s beastly hot outside and you want something refreshing and simple to make, why not whip up a simple heirloom tomato salad? Be sure to enjoy the sunshine because the winter months are looming right around the corner. And you know what that means, good bye sunny, sweet heirloom tomatoes, hello cold weather and hearty root vegetables.

Happy eating every one!

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