Heirloom Tomato and Cucumber Salad

I have always loved a light and refreshing Tomato and Cucumber Salad.  It is so easy to make and truly lets the flavors of summer produce shine through.

Two years ago we planted our first garden.  No one told me that 8 cucumber plants is way too much for a family of four!  So needless to say I was whipping up this salad every week with tomatoes I bought at the farmers market.

Last year we added tomatoes to our garden but they didn’t fare so well with the extreme heat we had in Tennessee last summer. (I have to admit it may have also had something to do with the fact that we didn’t add any compost or lime to the dirt!)

This summer is our third year of gardening and it looks like we are finally getting the hang of it! We are already on to a bumper crop of tomatoes of all varieties … and I only planted 3 cucumber plants (which will still be more than enough to feed our family!).

To make my version of this “fresh from the garden” salad, I love using all types of tomatoes … heirlooms of all shades and sizes. I also throw in sweet Vidalia onions in lieu of the white onions the classic recipe calls for.  Fresh basil from the garden also adds a delicious touch to this dish.

Enjoy!

Heirloom Tomato and Cucumber Salad

4 small Kirby cucumbers, sliced into 1/4-inch rounds
4 heirloom tomatoes, cored and cut into 1/4-inch wedges
1/4 cup thinly sliced Vidalia onions
1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Place the cucumbers, tomatoes, and onions in a large bowl. Add the vinegar, olive oil, and basil and gently toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Serves 4 to 6.

Cooking Tip: If you can’t find heirloom tomatoes near you, this salad would also be delicious with any ripe tomato from garden or market.

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Jennifer Chandler

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