The Last of Summer Tomato Salad

Et tu, summer?

After my last post about being still, I have to confess that I have been anything but. I woke up one day found myself in London:

I was there for business, but I did manage to fit in dinner with some friends, a few runs in Green Park, a peek at the Prime Meridian in Greenwich:

a meal and a chocolatey porter at the Mean Time brewery:

and a glorious hour at Fortnum & Mason, where I had an internal debate on whether my life would be incomplete without a $700 tea pot:

You know, because I have so many tea parties.

But then I realized that this decision was headed for the same outcome as a purchase I made 10 years ago of pleather pants, so I made a quick jaunt over to Carnaby Street where I bought overpriced scented erasers as souvenirs for the kids.

It was a hectic but productive trip, and as soon as I got home I promptly fell ill. And then got on a plane again soon thereafter.

All this rushing around argues for a bit of simplicity.

One of my favorite things about summer is tomatoes. Heirloom tomatoes, to be exact. Colorful, flavorful, deliciously simple. We still have time for that.

I made this salad as part of an dinner we had with friends outdoors on a warm summer night. Because when you are a friend just arriving from Germany, with another on her way to Europe and a third who is Canadian, it would only be logical to stop in for a meal prepared by a Chinese American married to a Brit.

It’s a simple one really — just some slicing and a vinaigrette. But perfectly colorful, tasty, and quick enough to allow you time to enjoy some pause amidst the busyness of everyday life.



  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 5-6 varied, fresh heirloom tomatoes
  • 3-4 leaves of basil


Slice the tomatoes into slices 1/4 inch thick. Place them in a single layer on a serving dish, and sprinkle with a pinch of salt.

Mix the balsamic vinegar and salt together, until the salt dissolves. Add in olive oil and stir until combined. Grind in some fresh black pepper to taste. Pour over the tomatoes.

Julienne 3-4 leaves of basil and sprinkle over the salad.

Serves 4-6.




  • September 17, 2013 - 8:14 AM | Permalink

    LOVE that shot of Carnaby Street! So idyllic and beautiful. You have been a busy bee! This salad is the perfect simplicity 🙂 I love late-summer tomatoes!! They are really just hitting their stride around here. I can’t get enough.

    I just came from a week off work where we didn’t actually go on vacation — a staycation, if I must use that word — I RELAXED. Everyone was like — what did you do on your vacation? I didn’t want to answer “took naps, went out for coffee with friends and watched Revenge” so I just said, “Whatever I wanted!”

    It was glorious, esp for someone like (you and) me who don’t often slow down. Wishing for some similar time for you in the near future! Cheers!

    • September 17, 2013 - 9:52 AM | Permalink

      Sophie, your relaxing at-home vacation sounds like a dream!!! I’m so glad you were able to get some down time. I have a few more trips planned so I think my next real down time will be Christmas! Which will be here soon enough. Thanks again for stopping by — always so excited to hear from you! xo

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