Summer Food series # 1 - Herby Tomato salad with pine nuts and cheese

Tomatoes, pine nuts and soft cheese

We are still in March and its scorchingly hot in Bombay. Just the day before, the temperature touched a record 41 C (almost 106 F). I was blaming global warming, just to be informed that the reason was not global but very much local . The Summer Food Series that I announced a couple of days ago has been my natural reaction to this unnatural heat in the city. These days, we are automatically inclined to eat raw, juicy fruits and vegetables. My fridge is full of oranges, limes, apples and my counters are strewn with tomatoes, a large watermelon and a couple of cantaloupes. But some of the tomatoes are sunning it out as per Anjali's instructions.

Standing in front of the gas stove is becoming quite a task and with super simple salads and raw foods, we intend to beat the heat to some extent.

Our nearly raw diet this week resulted in the discovery of some amazing salad combinations. Fruit-vegetable-spice, vegetable-nut-herb, and not try substituting your choice of fruits, veggies, nuts and herbs in those spaces and you will realise there are some million combinations if not more.

This is was super discovery which we loved so much that I made on two consecutive days. Besides, it is so simple that even your kid can assemble it.

Tomato salad with pine nuts and cheese
Category - Salads
Time taken - Under 10 minutes
Serves - 2

4 medium tomatoes - halved and each half cut into thirds
2 trianges of cheese - roughly pinched off ( I used Laughing Cow, Feta would be nice too)
1/2 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp dried oregano
Freshly cracked black pepper
Salt to taste ( If using feta, go easy on the salt)
2 tbsp pine nuts- lightly roasted
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil ( optional)

In a bowl, mix in all the ingredients except nuts. Chill for an hour or so. Garnish with toasted nuts just before serving.

serving suggestion
Spoon this salad between two slices of bread for a light, cold sandwich. I eat it just by itself.

BTW, today is STOP CYBERBULLYING DAY! So, I am not going to bully anyone to leave comments, its not like I have done it before....Hahaha


Anita said...

41 degrees already!! You can forget the pooris!

This salad is looking really good. And all those flavours make it perfect to beat the heat! There is no way I can leave tomatoes on the counter in the dry heat of Delhi. They will shrivel before they will ripen! Inthe summer, the fridge is 'warm' enough to slowly ripen them!

Richa said...

i love that laughing cow cheese!

btw hope you don't change the 'madras coffee filter' pic next week, I can't have my cup of 'tea' without looking at it ....

Mishmash ! said...

Yes Nandita, salad when tossed with fruits and nuts completely changes its look and feel when served. I love adding grapes and nuts to my salad. Yours look pretty :)And oh yea, have fun with the heat wave ;) (nooo I am not being sadistic )


trupti said...

This is such a fresh the flavors of pine nuts...I tried this once with fresh mozzarella cheese at a restaurant in Baltimore was delightful...great picture, Nandita.


Nandita said...

Anita, Mai khud poori ban gayi hu idhar! We're literally getting fried in here and working out is a PAIN, stamina has reduced to 10 minutes...after which Im only grumbling and groaning, so poori ka sawaal nahi hai abhi, as you rightly said...BTW, as many tomatoes i could stuff into the tray, they're in, rest are out because they have no place inside...I'm actually thinking of keeping one shelf in my fridge empty to chill my clothes...what say??

Richa - that was SO sweet of you, OK just for you, Im not going to change that pic, will add one below you want that to be a permanent fixture on my sidebar? :D I love laughing cow too, its so melty that finally this ends up melting in the salad like a creamy dressing.

Mish - read the comment above, I'm having no fun - wanna go away to some cooler climes, had escaped to London last May, dont know if I will be as lucky this year :)

Trupti- Thanks, yeah mozza would be great too, sour tomato with not so sour mozzarella, nice recommendation!

BTW Anita and Trupti, just for fun, get the mouse OVER your link on my side bar, come on just for fun!!

Richa said...

permanent fixture!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
you said it! Yippeee, I want it there, till i visit matunga next!
no, no, i'm not saying once i visit matunga it will become secondary (evil grin)

better yet how @ i use it as a banner for my blog.

Paddukoti said...

already 41 up there, gosh nandita, weather here struggling to get into double figures but guess what tomorrow its gonna be 14 here and i am already thinking of a barbecue!!
nice, simple and stylish recipe

Nandita said...

Sure, I can gift it to you Richa if you like it so much :) You can keep checkign it on your header :)

Padmaja -Oh yes, its hot! and 14 seems so lovely...perfect weather!

Nandita said...

I mean keep taking swigs from your header Richa :)

Richa said...

you are tempting me with your offer, Thank You.

Anyway, I will continue my daily pilgrimmage here for this and more!!

Sig said...

41 degrees, man thats hot... we had a hint of summer in the morning, and by afternoon it went back to the gloomy Seattle sky :(

That is one good looking salad girl! Coincidentally Siv and I've been eating a lot of salads lately too... Been coming up with some variety of dressings, will post sometime. I'll try ur version soon.

Nandita said...

Richa, let me know if you change your mind :)

Sig, u crib about the gloomy sky and I'll crib about the glaring sky! BTW your code implemented perfectly and your name is one more addition to the credits list...did u do a mouseover your link here ;)

Jyothsna said...

41 degrees in Mumbai.....its 27 in Dubai now and won't be long when it will touch 50!! :( I'll escape to Mumbai then!

Paz said...

Wow! It IS hot where you are! We are still wearing coats, even though it is supposed to be spring.

Love your tomato salad!


Anjali said...

Nandita check out my reply on my blog. Its good you are trying small qauntities. At 41 tomatoes would have sunbaked real well even with salt. I suggest you try unsalted first. Do not refrigerate duribng the drying process.

sunita's world said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
sunita's world said...

41 degrees Nandita...I can imagine how that feels, being used to the Delhi heat (we had 47 degrees once) for the salad, looks really great...I love tomatoes in any form.

Anonymous said...

i have repeated with half kilo, unsalted...its 41 degrees but more humidity than sunlight...but still i thot it was enough SUn...will report back chief!

Anita said...

chilled clothes is a very good idea! 41 is hot especially with the humidity in mumbai. At least, in Delhi it is dry, and the coolers make a quick affordable difference! You keep the AC on when you exercise - it's the only way!

I have filters on my computer...took forever to 'allow-xyz-temporarily" to get to see the blogroll! :-)

Latha said...

Lovely looking salad Nandita! Looks so refreshing! I have pine nuts at home. Maybe i'll try to for lunch tommorrow!

Mallugirl said...

wow, we seem to be thinking alike.. only difference was that i toasted my bread before piling on the salad. sorry to hear its hot there. here we are yearning for some sign of sun..

Pritya said...

Dear Nandita,
Salad with pine nuts and cheese sounds tangy and tasty. With basil, oregano and black pepper this would be a very flavoursome recipe. Would taste great with bread as a toast and the taste would be yummy if a little cold - right? Looks simply yummy.

Raaga said...

Hmmm... tried this... but the day I wanted to, I couldn't access the net... so ended up with a similar salad using tomatoes, cheese, cucumbers, toasted almonds and herbs... tasted quite yummy. Drizzled lemon instead of olive oil as I couldn't remember :(

Anonymous said...

hello! i made this salad a few weeks ago, but added a strange combination of avocado & placed cooked quinoa along the side of the was all very tasty & it's a PERFECT light summertime dinner. i love reading your recipes; you give great ideas!! thank you!

anubhavati said...

Hi Nandita,

Have just woken up to the fascinaitng truths about Quinoa...Do you have any recipes that might inspire me? I was almost using it in salads, and in idlis...


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