Friday, December 13, 2013

Heirloom Tomatoes, Basil, Ponzu Dressing

The idea of this dish is like, "One of these things is not like the other..."  Did you sing it in your head, too? I did. That was my thinking when visiting PF Chang's over the summer and trying their new Summer Tomato salad. I learned, actually, they DO go together. It's a whole lotta Lisa Marie and Michael action going on, on the palate. Is that weird? Much love for Mr. Jackson. Elvis, too, fortunate for Lisa Marie. Sadly this, too, will all end in divorce, when you tell the other tomato salads that you're just not that in to them anymore.

Ponzu Dressing
1/3 Cup Soy Sauce
1/3 Cup Olive Oil
2 TBSP Rice Vinegar
2 TBSP Mirin

1/4 Cup Basil, chiffonade
6 Heirloom Tomatoes, cubed
Half of Lemon, wedges
salt and pepper, to taste

Prep the Tomatoes first. Separate as much of the seeds and liquid out from the tomato flesh.  It can render the dish a bit too "liquidy". I like to cut the tomatoes in substantial size cubes, they look pretty this way and you get a good basil-to-ponzu-to-tomato ratio, makes sense right? I don't know where I come up these things, but it sounded good at the time and tasted fabulous, so I just went with it...

Moving along, chiffonade the Basil and set aside. I mean, you can tear in to barbarian pieces, alternately, and call it rustic, boom...tastes the same. However, presentation is 30% of the grade, so chiffonade for a dinner party and save the rustic-i-fication for the privacy of your kitchen.

Chiffonade is a chef-y word. Please don't be scared. YouTube that ish and get on it.

Dressing time! This part is quite difficult, bare with me. First, measure out the four ingredients into a (ceramic) bowl. I don't know why I said ceramic, you can use whatever bowl you prefer, really. Whisk, whisk, whisk. Whisk, whisk, whisk...and walla! Dressing complete. Set up your tomatoes on a platter or large plate, sprinkle the Basil over the top, drizzle dressing, salt and pepper, and lightly toss. Last step is to splash some lemon over the dish and serve.

In case you were wondering, I wasn't really serious about the difficultly, it's really easy. And quite beautiful. I'm happy to report that my local grocery, Glaziers, actually has a nice stock of heirlooms well in to December now! So, now we can have that PF Chang's summer salad, in December, at home and fresh. I want to hashtag "winning" but will refrain.

Instead, I say, Enjoy!
Until next time....Happy Cooking! And maybe Happy Holidays, too!!!! (See note below)   :)


A little note from me: I have many recipes in the works, and can't wait to post, post, post in the New year. I am swamped with projects in the meantime, meaning less frequent blog posts for the next couple of weeks. I'm sure you are all very busy, too, with the most wonderful time of the year. So, basically, what I'm trying to say is, Happy Holidays! if, by chance, I don't get in another post before Christmas.

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