Do you ever do that thing where you buy tomatoes before it’s really and truly time, because you just want it to be summer so badly, but you end up sad and disappointed because they’re inevitably mealy and flavorless? Yeah, I did that a few months ago. It was a bummer. So when tomato season hit for reals, I knew I had to make up for that earlier sad scene. I had to showcase these beauties in a way that was deserving. This salad is so deserving.
This is my very favorite way to enjoy tomatoes in the summer: roughly chopped and tossed with cucumbers, peppers, fresh herbs, and just a light squeeze of lemon juice. This is so refreshing, and even better, it’s practically effortless. All you need is a cutting board and a sharp knife.
If you don’t want the cheese, you can leave it out, and the salad will still be delightful. If you want it to be more substantial, grilled chicken or shrimp is a standout addition. Chickpeas are excellent another way to add some heft and protein. This is superb served alongside a dollop of hummus and some good pita, and I am not the only one who thinks so.
This is exactly the kind of dinner you want to make this weekend. It’s hot, and you’ve probably been crazy busy. There’s so much to do in the summer, and we don’t want to be spending hours making dinner when we could be hiking and swimming and getting sandy and salty at the beach. Tomato salad is a hero at times like these.
- 2 medium tomatoes
- ½ a cucumber
- 1 medium bell pepper
- a good handful of fresh basil (or parsley or dill or cilantro or whatever herbs you prefer)
- juice from half a lemon
- a sprinkle of salt
- about ½ tablespoon olive oil
- about ¾ cup crumbled feta
- De-stem and roughly chop the tomatoes. Quarter and slice the cucumber, and chop the bell pepper into about half inch pieces.
- Remove the basil leaves from the stems and roll them up to slice them into a chiffonade. (If you’re using another type of herb, just give them a good chop so they are minced, and there aren’t any huge pieces left.)
- Toss the vegetables and herbs together in a large bowl. Squeeze the lemon over the bowl (use your hands to catch the seeds), and sprinkle some salt and olive oil over it all. Toss everything together, then sprinkle with a bit of feta and serve.