This heirloom tomato salad is a beautiful celebration of summer flavors. Juicy ripe red, yellow, green, and orange heirloom tomatoes topped with toasted pine nuts, fresh basil, and a drizzle of olive oil.
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What are heirloom tomatoes?
Heirloom tomatoes are exquisite and tasty. They can truly shine all on their own so salads are the perfect way to eat them! Besides being visually appealing, and sweeter with intense flavors compared to supermarket tomatoes, heirloom tomatoes have a few other unique characteristics.
1. Unlike most tomatoes, the heirloom varieties have not been hybridized for aesthetic purposes such as color and shape, or shelf life. In fact heirloom tomatoes are often ‘ugly’ irregular with cracks and bumps. They also come in a variety of different colors.
2. The seeds are what makes an heirloom tomato. They are passed down from season to season, by the farmers, from the tomato plants that produced the best fruit.
3. Heirloom tomatoes are also pollinated naturally, by birds, insects, wind, or human hands.
4. Heirloom tomatoes are notorious for having a short shelf life. If you’ve been blessed enough to get your hands on some delicious heirloom tomatoes, eat it within a couple of days.
Why This Recipe Works
- Visually appealing: Bright, vibrant colors makes this salad look extremely appetizing.
- Fresh flavors: The combination of flavors from the heirloom tomatoes, basil and olive oil is fresh and flavorful.
- Customizable: Feel free to add your personal touch to the salad by adding more veggies, a touch of chili flakes or your favorite cheese.
- Easy and quick: It just a few simple steps you can get this heirloom salad on the table.
- Seasonal: There’s nothing better than eating produce when it’s in season and tastes its best.
- Heirloom tomatoes – Choose a variety of tomatoes with different colors for more visual appeal in this tomato pine nut salad.
- Pine nuts – Toasted for a deep nutty flavor and crunch.
- Olive oil – Extra virgin olive oil tastes great on these tomatoes but any kind will work.
- Sea salt and pepper – Just a pinch of salt and pepper to enhance the tase of this salad.
- Fresh basil – Finely chopped, fresh basil adds flavor and a pop of color to this salad with heirloom tomatoes.
How To Make This Heirloom Tomato Salad Recipe
- Step 1: Toast the pine nuts in a small skillet over the stove until they start to brown and then set them aside. Alternatively you can toast the nuts in the toaster oven, just watch to make sure they don’t burn.
- Step 2: Using a sharp knife, slice the heirloom tomatoes to your desired thickness. If your tomatoes are exceptionally large, first cut them in half before cutting them into slices.
- Step 3: Combine olive oil, salt and pepper in a small bowl and whisk to combine.
- Step 4: Drizzle the olive oil over the heirloom tomato salad, top with pine nuts and garnish with fresh basil. Serve.
Tips and Variations
- Choose different color tomatoes for the best visual appeal.
- Look for tomatoes that don’t have any blemishes for the best flavor. Weird shapes and sizes are okay.
- Add a can of chickpeas or other beans for a heartier, meal-like salad.
- Sprinkle with feta or Parmesan cheese for a more savory salad or make an heirloom tomato salad with goat cheese.
- Top with slices of red onion for a more pungent flavor.
- Drizzle with some balsamic vinegar to sweeten it up.
- Mix in other tomatoes for a range of tomato flavors.
- Top with fresh parsley as a garnish.
The best way to enjoy heirloom tomatoes is in this salad! Salads are definitely the way to go to enjoy their unique flavor. Or you can top your favorite burger with an heirloom tomato too.
Remove the core and slice to your desired thickness. If the tomato is especially large you may want to cut it in half before slicing.
These tomatoes are grown from saved seeds that don’t grow in mass quantities.
Make Ahead and Storage
This salad with heirloom tomatoes is best served fresh, just after you make it or a few minutes after it’s been prepared. Unfortunately it doesn’t keep well so it is best to only prepare what you will eat right away.
Looking for more delicious salad recipes?
Heirloom Tomato Salad
- 4 heirloom tomatoes, different colors
- 2 tbsp pine nuts
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 pinch sea salt and pepper
- 1 tbsp fresh basil finely chopped
- In a small skillet toast pine nuts until they start to brown (about 3-4 minutes). Set aside.
- Slice heirloom tomatoes to deside thickness. If they are exceptionally large, first slice the tomato in half then into slices.
- In a smal bowl whisk olive oil, salt and pepper.
- Drizzle olive oil over the tomato salad. Top with pine nuts and garnish with fresh basil and a few basil leaves. Serve*
Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.