|Heirloom Tomato BLT Panzanella Salad|
In recent years, heirloom tomatoes have caught the fancy of an increasing number of gardeners and local growers making them more widely available. These are the tomatoes that people have fallen in love with, and have deemed worthy of keeping from plants that have been grown year after year and handed down from gardener to gardener. Heirloom tomato seeds, like your grandmother’s china, are viewed as precious family treasures that have been passed from generation to generation. For an heirloom tomato to qualify for heirloom status it has to have been around for at least 50 years. Newer genetic variations are classified as hybrids.
Heirloom tomatoes have several advantages over hybrids. Most importantly they have outstanding flavour! They also come in a variety of colours, pink, yellow, orange, maroon, purple and may even be marbled or striped or have unusual shapes. Until the 20th century and the onset of hybrids tomato varieties were every shape but round. With names like Cherokee Purple, Brandywine, Kellogg's Breakfast, San Marzano, Yellow Pear, Radiator and Charlie's Mortgage Lifter how can you resist!!!
Nature blesses perfectly ripe summer tomatoes with their own ideal dressing. Rich olive oil and a generous seasoning of salt and pepper are practically all that’s needed to bring out the sunny flavour of summer tomatoes and complement the sweet-tart acidity of their natural juices.
Use the showiest farmers' market or heirloom tomatoes you can find for this salad that combines my favourite seasonal sandwich and a classic Italian salad, with a touch of corn and basil thrown in for an extra summery flair. This recipe is based upon one found at Cooking Light. The saltiness of the bacon, the peppery arugula and the sweetness of the tomatoes offer the perfect balance of summer flavours.
Heirloom tomatoes hold a special place in my heart. Some of my favourites are...
|Warm Gnocchi Salad with Carpaccio of Heirloom Tomatoes and Basil|
|Layered Heirloom Tomatoes with Feta and Basil Oil|
|Heirloom Tomato Salad with Burrata|
|Heirloom Tomatoes with Feta, Basil and Balsamic Syrup|
|Heirloom Tomato Salad with Pesto Vinaigrette|
**Heirloom Tomato BLT Panzanella Salad**
3 ounces Italian bread, crusts trimmed, torn into 1/4-inch pieces
3/4 cup fresh corn kernels
4 large ripe heirloom tomatoes, cored and cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices
1 cup small multicoloured cherry tomatoes, halved
1/8 teaspoon plus dash of kosher salt, divided
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup baby arugula
3 tablespoons olive oil mayonnaise
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons minced fresh chives
1/4 cup basil leaves
3 apple wood-smoked bacon slices, cooked and crumbled
Melt butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add corn kernels and sauté until lightly browned. Remove and set aside. Add bread to skillet; sauté 5 minutes or until bread is toasted, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; stir in corn.
Sprinkle tomatoes with dash of salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper; let tomatoes stand 5 minutes.
Combine remaining 1/8 teaspoon salt, remaining 1/4 teaspoon pepper, vinegar, and oil in a large bowl. Add bread mixture and arugula; toss to coat. Combine mayonnaise, lemon juice, and chives in a small bowl.
Arrange tomatoes and bread mixture on a large platter. Drizzle with mayonnaise mixture; sprinkle evenly with basil and bacon.
You are reading this post on More Than Burnt Toast at http://morethanburnttoast.blogspot.com. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to the author/owner of More Than Burnt Toast. All rights reserved by Valerie Harrison.