This weekend I have harvested my first outdoor tomatoes of the year and they are ripe on time! The weather here has improved and we’ve been barbecuing outside, grilling/broiling indoors and packing up an alfresco skinnylicious picnic or two.
I adore these fist-sized tomatoes with their seemingly pleated tops, they have so much flavour and can be used in so many ways. Many I simply slice and layer with low-fat mozzarella cheese and fresh basil leaves then drizzle with a little dressing; others I stuff and bake for a main meal; and one or two go towards making an accompaniment for many summer meals. Often this means making a kind of salsa or sauce that can be served with fish, poultry, vegetable kebabs and quick-cook meats, or used to top a bariatric pizza, crispbread or burger. The latest salsa I have made
is gazpacho style using tomatoes, red onion, peppers/capsicums and a little cucumber. I spice it up with a dash of Tabasco and sherry vinegar but they are optional. Any that don’t get used while still plump and fresh will be roasted in the oven for use in dishes like salads, risottos, pasta sauces and the rest where their intense flavour and chewiness will add welcome depth to the flavour. I used some to layer onto crusty rustic-style bread with herbs and a little grated cheese and they tasted sublime!
But onto the salsa recipe – it’s simple and somewhat tart and so is ideal for serving with oily fish like grilled/broiled sardines or salmon (and reminds me of long lazy lunches eaten in beach-side shacks in Portugal). The quantity here will serve 2 to 4 depending upon appetites but do feel free to double or treble the recipe quantities, it will prove to be amazingly versatile and keeps in the refrigerator for a good few days.
4 large vine tomatoes
1 red onion, finely chopped
small piece cucumber, about 4 cm/11/2 inches, finely chopped
1/2 small pointed red pepper/capsicum, finely chopped
1 shake Tabasco sauce
1 tbsp sherry vinegar
2 tsp fruity olive oil
salt and freshly ground black pepper
chopped fresh herbs to flavour and garnish (optional)
1. Quarter the tomatoes, scrape the seeds into a sieve over a bowl and finely chop the flesh. Discard the seeds and add the flesh to the juices in the bowl.
2. Stir in the red onion, cucumber, pepper/capsicum, Tabasco, sherry vinegar, oil and salt and pepper to taste.
3. Just before serving stir in the chopped fresh herbs if using.
WLS PORTION: 1/2
V suitable for Vegetarians
CALORIES PER PORTION: 66