A basic tomato basil salad to serve as a side dish with your main course meal.
Includes instructions on how to peel tomatoes to make this salad.
You wil need a few handful of ingredients. Those are common pantry ingredients!
Can be any variety, pick your favorite!
I like to use a blend of red and yellow tomatoes to create a contrast (if I have yellow ones growing in my garden).
Bull's heart tomatoes are really nice for this purpose too and my uncle swears that a perfect tomato salad needs to use this variety.
Black tomatoes are a great idea if you want to wow your family and friends.
Smaller tomato varieties are difficult to peel too. I tend to not recommend using them in this tomato salad recipe.
At the end, what matters are juicy fresh tomatoes!
Fresh basil is the key here!
Best is if you are growing your own set of basil leaves in a small kitchen garden space.
Italian basil (aka regular basil) is the best choice but you may use other basil varieties too.
For example, there are smaller basil leave varieties and Asian basil varieties such as Thai basil or the Indian holy basil (Tulsi).
Super simple seasoning, salt and black pepper. It doesn't require more.
But if you fancy more flavor, then I recommend you add a pinch of chili pepper to add heat, or a sprinkle of cumin powder to give it a Mexican touch, or a dashof herbes de provence to bring out Mediterranean flavors.
Fresh oregano can be also a great way to bring out more flavors.
Try to use only colde pressed extra virgin olive oil in this tomato salad recipe.
The quality of olive oil can make or break this recipe.
The oils bring out the other flavors such as the tomato, basil and seasoning, so it's important to use the right olive oil here.
If you are on a budget, you may use regular olive oil BUT pick one form a known and trusted brand because adulterated olive oil is unfortunately a relaity.
🔪 How to make it?
Here is how we make a tomato salad. This is my french uncles' recipe. The pictures were taken by Teena for Masala Herb.
The complete printable recipe with measurements and detailed instructions is located further below in the recipe card.
Rinse your tomatoes well.
Bring a smaller pan with water to boil, so to blanch the tomatoes.
Cook tomatoes short (aka blanch) for 30-60 seconds or until you see the skin cracking.
Place immediately into a bowl with ice water to stop the cooking process and to cool
Peel tomatoes one by own with your fingers. The peel will just go off easily after the blanching process.
Cut tomatoes small to desired size. Can be sliced or diced.
Place tomatoes into a container, a serving bowl or a plate.
Season with salt and black pepper, sprinkle olive oil over the tomatoes.
Sprinkle freshly chopped basil over your tomatoes just before serving.
We love this salad as a side dish with most main course meals.
In France, in summer, they tend to prepare it every day and serve it with other vegetable side dishes when it gets hot.
It's a cheap budget-friendly dish, it's refreshing and filing as well.
Paul loves this salad sometimes on its own, just like the Caprese salad, when it's hot outside.
You can take it to a BBQ get-together too because tomato with basil and olive oil goes well with most grill meats.
You can place your tomato salad on a serving platter and cover it with a cling foil wrap if you are planning to take it to a tailgating or BBQ party. That way it stays fresh.
You can keep leftovers in your fridge for a day or so if you store it in an airtight container.
The salad shouldn't be frozen, there is no point in doing so.
Please feel free to share your thoughts and ideas with us in the comment section further below!
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Simple Tomato Basil Salad Recipe
- Rinse tomatoes to get rid of impurities.
- To peel the tomatoes, keep a pot with water to boil and place fresh tomatoes in for 30-60 seconds. or until the skin shows some cracks. This is called blanching.
- Take out tomatoes and place them into a bowl with ice cubes and icy water to stop the cooking process immediately. That way the tomatoes will cool off fast too.
- Peel tomatoes with your fingers. The skin should come off easily now.
- Cut peeled tomatoes into slices or larger dice.
- Place tomatoes into a serving bowl or plate. Sprinkle salt, black pepper, olive oil, and freshly chopped basil leaves over that.
- You can mix it up but the tomatoes might get a bit mushy. Otherwise, just serve as is room temperature or cooled.
- If you use store-bought tomatoes, which might be treated with pesticides, I recommend that you place them into a large bowl with water and a tablespoon of citric acid. Citric acid won't harm your health but takes off all pesticides from your tomatoes. It comes clean off the tomato skin.
- If you use larger tomatoes, cut them smaller or to your desired size. It's easier to eat bite-sized pieces.