Good Food, Good Life, 365 – Summer Cucumber & Tomato Salad
Summer Cucumber & Tomato Salad
1 English cucumber (this is the long, seedless variety)
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
3 tablespoons cream cheese with chives
2 to 3 tablespoons Italian vinaigrette
fresh basil, for garnish
Peel cucumber, then trim the ends and cut them in half the long way. Cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices and place in a bowl. Sprinkle with about 1/4 teaspoon of salt, cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes to up to 2 or 3 hours. Remove from refrigerator. Dump into colander. Let drain for about 30 minutes. Place the cucumber slices on a clean kitchen towel or paper towels. Pat dry. Transfer to shallow serving dish.
Add cherry tomato halves. Drizzle Italian vinaigrette over the cukes and tomatoes. Gently toss to coat. Place in refrigerator to marinate for a couple of hours. Overnight is fine.
When ready to serve, place small dollops of cream cheese over the mixture. Garnish with a sprig of fresh basil.
Serve with slices of garlic toast or crusty bread as an hors d’oeuvre or serve as a salad.
Fresh mozzarella is a nice substitute for the chive cream cheese.
Flavors are best when you make this salad with fresh, seasonal tomatoes and cucumbers.
This is the Italian vinaigrette I like to use:
1 large clove garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano or Italian seasoning blend
3 tablespoons good quality extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1/4 teaspoon salt
Make the dressing by mixing all the ingredients in a small bowl.