Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Beefeater Salad

I may know my way around a cupcake, but Beloved is definitely the connoisseur in the family when it comes to tomatoes. The man can tell with uncanny accuracy in what part of the state a tomato was grown…and he doesn’t bother with “store-bought” ones. Unfortunately, this year his little garden has produced no tomatoes. The plants are large and produce lovely blooms…which promptly fall off. :( So… we spend Saturday mornings at the farmers’ market


It is a tomato lover’s dream—a smorgasbord of tomato varieties, shapes, colors, and sizes. Beloved prefers a very acidic tasting tomato and our favorite grower has been recommending beefeater tomatoes. Last weekend we experimented to try to reproduce a salad he’d had in a top notch steak restaurant.


The result was a salad that was not only tasty, but easy and colorful! A lot of bang for your buck!

Beefeaters Salad

Salad greens—we used romaine

Beefeater tomatoes, thickly sliced

Crumbled cheese of your choice—blue, feta, gorgonzola

Fresh basil, chopped

Capers, optional

Balsamic vinaigrette-commercial or homemade


My basil crop put his tomato crop to shame :)

Balsamic Vinaigrette

3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1/2 cup balsamic vinegar

1 clove garlic, minced

6 fresh basil leaves, chopped

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon seasoned pepper

And while we’re on the subject of capers….we are, aren’t we? Beloved asked me exactly what a caper is. Do you know?


A caper, according to my sources, is a pickled flower bud of a usually spiny perennial Mediterranean shrub ( Capparis spinosa) that bears white to pinkish-white flowers. Isn’t it a gorgeous flower? No wonder those little jars are expensive.

I’ll be linking to my favorite foodie/novelist Michael Lee West for Foodie Friday at Designs by Gollum. You can get there immediately by clicking on the button on my sidebar. You are sure to leave hungry and inspired!

Thanks for dropping by! If you can enlighten us on our tomato plight, I’d love to hear your advice for next year. Have a good weekend and happy eating….and you thought I just made desserts :) :)


  1. I'm definitely not the one to ask about gardening. The salad you made looked delicious. Nothing beats a home-grown tomato!!

  2. Sorry but I rely on our farmers' market for our tomatoes. In fact, I try to be the first in line for the best selection without having to elbow sweet little old ladies out of my way. We are tomato gluttons all summer long and I'm always happy for a new and tasty way to serve them.


  3. Our tomatoes didn't make it this year either. We had a few tiny ones, but the heat got to ours.

    The salad sounds perfect!

  4. G'day Susan ~
    Looks good, sounds good & love my own grown tomatoes.

    Have a lovely summer day ~
    TTFN ~ Hugs, Marydon

  5. Mmmmm, I ADORE tomatoes and this looks wonderful!

  6. The salad sounds and looks delish, with a light sprinkle of feta, and without capers please. Sorry - I am of no help on the tomatoes. Something is eating the leaves off my potted plants, and have heard that other people have had the same problem this year.
    Loving the lower humidity and temps.

  7. Your Farmers Market has a great display of tomatoes!! Your salad looks yummy:)

  8. Looks great, I only had tomatoes for about two weeks this year! So off to the market I go too:@)

  9. Sorry your tomatoes aren't doing well, but glad you can find good ones at the farmer's market. I don't know what the cause would be...perhaps the weather? Ours are producing well but the vines are blighty - we've had a VERY wet spring and summer and I attribute it to that. Your salad looks good and I want to try it. Better luck in the garden next year! ~ Beth

  10. looks good, my tomatoes did bad this year too. But yum I love capers!!

  11. A very tasty looking salad... it must be from that healthy and robust basil plant :)

  12. I'm impressed with your husband's interest in tomatoes. I wish my husband was so versed in my favorite veggie like fruit. My tomatoes haven't done well the whole time we've lived here, and I recently was told they don't grow well in areas with black walnut trees (we have tons). So I guess I'll have to continue buying them from the farmer's market.

    Happy FF.


  13. Oh, I just came across your blog and love it!
    Thank you for sharing!

  14. That salad is one of my favorites. Blue cheese and tomatoes. Yum! I don't know if there is an extension agent in your area to call about the tomato issue. If there isn't, try calling a reputable nursery.

  15. Oh, YUM!!! All my favorites together in one dish :)


  16. Hi Susan,

    Love the combination of tomato and basil in a salad and buffalo mozzarella cheese.
    I am with you there, the store bought tomatoes have no taste. A tomato needs to be vine ripened, not with chemicals, as they so often are.

    Happy weekend

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