My uncle Paul has the greenest thumbs I know. He has a big sunny backyard and grows the best veggies – kilos of broad beans, basket-loads of lemons, buckets of zucchini, tubs of chillies, all different ones, and right now, loads and loads of beautiful tomatoes. We’ve been eating them sliced up every morning for brekky, my aunt Rose and I, on sourdough toast, with lots of unsalted butter and a smear of Promite, and the necessary black pepper and grind of salt…
He gave me some to bring back home after the holidays so I set straight to chopping them up for the simplest but most wonderful salad known to man or woman:
Paul’s tomatoes with buffalo mozzarella and basil
- A large bowl of tomatoes, ideally different shapes and sizes and even colours if you’ve got them!
- A ball of buffalo mozzarella in a tub
- A bunch of basil
- Some really great olive oil (or at least as fresh as you can get!)
- Black pepper in a mill
What to do:
- Wash and dry the tomatoes and chop into good chunks, discarding any hard cores and place in a decent shallow bowl.
- Open the mozzarella and drain the ball. Pull apart large chunks of the cheese and dot over the tomatoes.
- Wash and spin dry the basil leaves then tear into small pieces and scatter over the salad.
- Drizzle over the best olive oil that you can reach. Grind over a few twists of black pepper. Let the salad sit for 20 minutes for the flavours to sink in.
- Eat! Crusty bread is great to mop it all up…
As always, the quality of the stuff you use is important, especially when you’re only using so few ingredients. Buffalo mozzarella is expensive but by golly it’s delicious, and perfect for the sweet and acidic brilliance of the home-grown tomatoes. I was also happy to find some Nolan’s Road ‘delicate’ olive oil in the cupboard to use, that stuff’s so good you could drink it neat. Hope you can get in to some soon…
Happy New Year everybody!