When it comes to summer foods, simple salads and summer produce dishes are often the option of choice for cookouts, picnics and delicious meal options. With the summer markets and gardens offering a bounty this time of the year, it’s pretty easy to find salad options. When it comes to this simple dish, I invite you to get creative with different flavors and textures.
This recipe can be created as written or you can choose to opt out ingredients for others. With summer slowing down, I am finding an abundance of fresh produce that needs to be used or canned. Therefore I loaded this goodie up with things I had from the market and garden. Fresh herbs can be altered and include basil, mint or dill. Not only do herbs provide an additional flavor and garnish but they also help with detoxification.
Heirloom tomatoes are one of my favorites to grow in the garden. Though I do love all fresh off the vine tomatoes, I’ve really grown to love the heirloom variety. This year in the garden, I am growing black prince, green zebra and persimmons (which have been called a tree fruit). These tomatoes have an added health benefit in that they contain lycopene. One of the most powerful natural antioxidants. These tomatoes are rich in Vitamin C, which helps to nourish different parts of the body and has been linked to stress reduction.
Watermelons are another staple often found in the garden and at markets during the summer season. This juicy and tasty fruit helps to keep us hydrated during the hot summer months. Watermelon has been linked to reduced inflammation, heart health and weight loss.
The combination of these two beauties are not only gorgeous but also healthy and delicious. I often top my dishes with goat or sheet cheese, which is easier on the digestion at times. You can play with different dressing ideas like oil and fresh squeeze lemon, balsamic glaze or dressing or you can make your own like the simple recipe below. You can add additional toppings like avocado, nuts and seeds too!
Have fun with summer produce this season. There are so many fun and delicious combinations to experiment with.
Summer Heirloom Tomato and fruit Salad
- 4 heirloom tomatoes, cut into wedges or bite sized pieces
- 4 cups watermelon, cubed
- 2 peaches, nectarines or plums (you can add all if you like)
- 2 ounces of goat cheese, shredded
- 1/4 red onion, thinly sliced
- small handful of mint leaves
- small handful of Microgreens https://www.marylandmicrogreens.com
- Optional: Bed of arugula or spinach
- ½ cup Infused Olive Oil or Oil of Choice https://oliveandbasket.com
- ¼ cup Peach or Key Lime Balsamic Vinegar https://oliveandbasket.com
- 1 Tbsp raw honey
- Optional: Salt and Pepper to taste
To Prepare the Salad:
1. In a bowl or serving platter, place greens as a base.
2. Mix the microgreens (if using) with the salad greens or reserve for topping
3. Top the greens with tomatoes, fruit and then goat cheese.
5. Sprinkle nuts, if using and serve with dressing.
In a mason jar with lid or mixing bowl, mix oil with a gradual drip of balsamic to taste. Depending on the desired sweetness. Add the honey for desired texture and taste. If using, finish with salt and pepper. Shake or stir to combine ingredients before serving with the salad.
P.S. if this salad sounds appealing to your palate, I welcome you to check out this summer beet salad. Summer Peachy Beet Salad