A few months ago I blogged about how my son was looking for “signs of spring.” I’ve got a new one to add his list: the opening of the Cherry Creek Fresh Market, one of the biggest farmers’ markets in Denver. While it was heavy on vendors and light on growers, it still lifted my spirits, reminding me of all the fresh produce to come.
How light on produce was it? So light that all I found were late summer goodies such as corn and tomatoes. The latter were from Arizona, but I bought them anyway. I couldn’t resist. My son pops them like candy and when we got home, so did I. There are some things I’ll buy at the store in the winter but a hard pink tomato isn’t one of them. These fresh tomatoes were a delight.
After setting some aside for school lunches, I took the rest and tried an unusual Tomato and Lemon Salad from Gourmet. You slice the tomatoes in half, then marinate them in lemon zest, extra virgin olive oil, lemon segments and sugar. The combination sounds odd until you remember two things: 1) tomatoes are technically a fruit; and 2) lemons + sugar = lemonade.
The salad comes together quickly and would pair well with a grilled fish such as halibut. To eat it as a stand-alone salad and not as a topping for protein, I would add feta and possibly a handful of chickpeas. Remember that the longer the tomatoes sit the mellower they get, so make it farther ahead than the 15 minutes specified in the recipe.
Click here for the recipe for Cherry Tomato and Lemon Salad.