I am a huge fan of tomatoes. Even as a child, all I needed was a big ripe tomato with a little salt sprinkled on top, a slice of buttered bread and maybe an egg. Dinner! Sounds a little sparse, I know, but I have only recently switched to serving hot meals in the evening instead of for lunch. Bread, cold-cuts and cheese with pickles, quick pickled beets and salads. Typical German dinner.
I love tomato salad. Simple. With oil and vinegar, salt and pepper and some chives. Or a little more fancy with a Picada of almonds, capers and rustic bread. Serve with your Sunday roast (without the Picada) or for lunch, dinner, Brotzeit, or whenever with the Picada. I grow a lot of tomatoes and now is the time to serve them up as one last celebration of summer.
SERVES 2 TO 6
For the Salad
- one pound of various tomatoes
- 4 tablespoons of olive oil
- 3 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar
- sea salt and fresh pepper to taste
For the Picada
- 1/8 cup (20g) blanched almonds
- one small slice of stale rustic bread
- 1 teaspoon of olive oil
- 1-2 tablespoons of small capers
- 2-3 sprigs of italian parsley, washed and finely minced
- 1 garlic clove, finely minced
Slightly toast the almonds in a heavy skillet without oil until fragrant. Let cool and chop. Remove the crust of the bread and cut into small cubes. Add olive oil to your skillet and roast the bread cubes until golden brown and crisp. Drain the capers and add them to the bread cubes for just a short moment while stirring.
Wash the tomatoes and cut them into thin slices. Arrange them on a large platter. Sprinkle with olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper. Mix all of the ingredients for the Picada. Sprinkle the Picada over the tomatoes and serve immediately.
Tip: If you cannot find blanched almonds in the store, you can easily blanch and peel them yourself. Pour the almonds into a small sauce pan and cover with water. Bring the water to to a boil for a minute. Drain and let cool enough to handle. The brown skins of the almonds with loosen and you can easily pop the almond out of the skin by giving it a little squeeze with your fingers. Don't let them cool down too much because the skin will become hard again. If that happens you can just blanch them once more.
SOURCE: ADAPTED FROM BRIGITTE MAGAZINE