Summer is finally here – I’m ready to pare down, go simple, fresh and colorful and to dine al fresco! So I’ve been busy looking at some of my favorite Simple Summer Salad Recipes that I’d like to share with you. All are super easy to make. I’ve used produce from my garden or the local farmer’s market, but if none of these are available, just be sure to use the freshest ingredients you can find for the tastiest salads.
Marinated Watermelon and Tomato Salad (Real Simple)
This is fabulous for a picnic or barbecue!
10 cups cubed seedless watermelon
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1 1/2 lbs tomatoes, chopped
1/2 small red onion, sliced
1/2 cup torn fresh basil leaves
2 tlbs olive oil
sea salt and pepper
Combine the watermelon and lime juice in a large bowl. Let sit, stirring occasionally, at room temperature for 15 minutes. (The watermelon will absorb the lime juice as it sits.) Add the tomatoes, onions, basil, oil, 3/4 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp pepper and toss to combine.
Sesame, Tomato and Cucumber Salad (Southern Living)
I confess to loving this salad all year long!
1 lb heirloom tomatoes, thinly sliced crosswise
1/2 cup thinly sliced English cucumber
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp rice vinegar
2 tsp olive oil
2 medium scallions, thinly sliced
1 medium jalapeño pepper, thinly sliced
2 tsp toasted sesame seeds
sea salt and pepper
I use a mandolin to slice the veggies really thin. Arrange tomato and cucumber slices on a platter. Whisk together soy sauce, vinegar, olive oil and drizzle over tomatoes and cucumbers. Sprinkle with scallions, chile, sesame seeds. salt and pepper.
Fresh Peach and Basil Vinaigrette (Southern Living)
Can’t wait for the peaches on our tree to be ripe!
1/3 cup white balsamic vinegar
1 garlic clove, minced
2 tsp brown sugar
1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
1/8 tsp salt
2 tsp olive oil
1 large peach, chopped
1 1/2 tbsp chopped fresh basil
Whisk together first 5 ingredients until sugar is dissolved. Whisk in olive oil. Stir in chopped peach and basil. Serve immediately.
Balsamic Beet Salad (adapted from Barefoot Contessa)
My neighbor Milt grows the best beets! Have you tried the yellow ones yet?
8 medium-size beets (Ina’s recipe call for roasting, but I’ve had good luck steaming them.)
½ cup balsamic vinegar
½ cup olive oil
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
4 -6 ounces baby arugula
1/3 cup almonds, toasted
4 ounces soft goat cheese, such as Montrachet, crumbled
salt and pepper
Whisk together the vinegar, olive oil, mustard, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper and set aside. While the beets are still warm, cut each one in half and then each half into 4 to 6 wedges and place them in a large mixing bowl. As you’re cutting the beets, toss them with half of the vinaigrette (warm beets absorb more vinaigrette), 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
Place the arugula in a separate bowl and toss it with enough vinaigrette to moisten. Put the arugula on a serving platter and then arrange the beets, almonds, and goat cheese. Drizzle with additional vinaigrette, if desired, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and serve warm or at room temperature.
Caprese Salad (Rachel’s Garden)
This is my “go to” salad when the tomatoes and basil in my garden are ripe!
four ripe tomatoes, sliced
1 lb fresh mozzarella, sliced
Slice the tomatoes and mozzarella and arrange casually with the basil leaves on a large platter. Drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper and serve at room temperature. Best served with crusty French bread.
Enjoy your Summer!