When tomatoes are at the height of the season, serve this salad alone and make it with an assortment of heirloom varieties, preferably of different colors. Pushing the seeds out of the wedges with a finger helps prevent the juice from diluting the vinegar and oil. 6 large ripe tomatoes, about ¾ pound each, or about 4½ pounds smaller tomatoes.
– 6 large ripe tomatoes, about ¾ pound each, or about 4½ pounds smaller tomatoes.
– ½ cup extra virgin olive oil.
– 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar or other wine vinegar, or more to taste.
– 1 handful of fresh basil leaves, 1 tablespoon chopped fresh marjoram, or 2 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon leaves, chopped at the last minute (optional).
Step 1:If you have perfect summer tomatoes, don’t bother to peel them. If you don’t, plunge them into boiling water for about 30 seconds, rinse them immediately with cold water, and pull away the skin in strips with a paring knife. Cut out the stem end, and cut each large tomato into 12 wedges or smaller tomato into 6 wedges. Push the seeds out of each wedge with a fingertip.
Step 2:Just before serving, combine the tomatoes, oil, vinegar, basil, and salt and pepper to taste in a bowl and toss to mix. Don’t toss the salad any sooner. The salt will draw the water out of the tomatoes, which will dilute the vinegar and oil and make the dressing runny, and if you have included basil, it will wilt.