Summery Tomato Basil Salad with Chive Vinaigrette, made with heirloom tomatoes, sweet and purple basil dressed in a chive vinaigrette with a burst of fresh lemon.
How many tomato salads can one come up with? Me thinks not enough of course!
If I haven’t expressed my obsession with tomatoes quite well, I’d like to point out the obvious. I start planting my tomatoes in February. So by June I can walk through those tall plants and pick some red jewels to snacks on, right off the vine. I also plant a couple of different varieties of basil, my favorites being Genoese and Purple basil.
Actually, I even wrote an article about all the different types of basil, just to help myself decide on which varities to plant in my garden. The struggle is real!
This tomato basil salad can be very different from one day to the next. It all depends on how I decide to dress it.
One day I’ll make a chive vinaigrette with a burst of fresh lemon, and the next I’ll toss it in a smooth chive pesto like I do with my potato salad. At its core still a tomato basil salad, but with a very unique flair every time. The perfection of nature at its best, It doesn’t cease to amaze me, ever
Ultimately, the quality of the tomatoes you are using and the different varieties will dictate the outcome of the taste. Always best to use a mix of organic heirloom tomatoes, different shapes and sizes rustically sliced and tossed together to marry their flavors. Kind of how I do with grandpa’s cucumber tomato salad. Don’t you just love that one ?!
Since I made a chive vinaigrette here, I also used some chive blossoms to sprinkle over the top, together with the basil blossoms.
The chives add sweet flavor to the tomato basil salad, and that ” je ne sai quoi “ that make it look like a lot of thought and care went into the dish.
As with any salad really, place the serving bowl on the table, and only when everyone has sat down to eat, you pour the chive vinaigrette over the top and give it a gentle toss. Then you eat, and ask for seconds, and I hope you make enough of this tomato basil salad so nobody starts a fight.
I have a thing for chives, hence the chive vinaigrette here, but this would be equally delicious with a lemon thyme dressing, if chives aren’t your thing.
Or as I was saying earlier, a nice smooth pesto makes a divine dressing for this tomato basil salad.
- 2 lb heirloom tomatoes mixed sized & colors
- 5 sprigs sweet or Genoese basil
- 5 sprigs purple basil
- 1 shallot thinly sliced
- 1/3 c extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 lemon juiced
- 1/2 tsp sea salt + more to taste
- 1/2 bunch chives snipped
- 5 chives for garnish roughly chopped
- chive blossoms for garnish
- basil blossoms for garnish
In a small jar add the olive oil, lemon juice , snipped chives and sea salt. Shake together until combined. Taste and adjust seasonings with more sea salt and lemon juice until happy.
Cut the heirloom tomatoes into wedges and rounds and arrange in a medium serving bowl. Sprinkle with the sliced shallot and drizzle with the chive vinaigrette all over.
Garnish with the different colors of basil leaves and blossoms.
Toss to coat just before serving.