The Perfect Summer Side Dish Goes Together Quickly
Tomato and cucumber salad is the reward for putting up with flies, mosquitos, and humidity in the summer. It is so simple; just fresh summer vegetables tossed in a basic vinaigrette. It’s proof that food does not need to be complicated to be amazing.
Maybe you have a garden; if you do, I admire you more than you know! Or maybe, like me, you have a favorite produce vendor at the farmer’s market and are happy to trade your money for his hard work.
Either way, we’ve reached the peak of the growing season, and the quantity and quality of fresh vegetables are dazzling! There is nothing that can match the flavor of vine-ripened, hand-picked tomatoes, and when you combine them with crisp English cucumbers (also known as “burpless” or seedless cucumbers), something amazing happens.
Tomato and cucumber is a combination that was born to co-star in a salad for so many reasons! Cucumbers and tomatoes have flavors that complement each other. Tomatoes are slightly sweet and acidic, while cucumbers have a refreshing and mild taste, and that makes both flavors taste even better together.
Soft juicy tomatoes provide a nice contrast to crisp, crunchy cucumbers. The best cucumbers for this salad are thin-skinned English cukes. The skins are so tender you don’t need to peel them, making the color contrast between them even more stunning. You can use regular cucumbers but peel them and remove large seedy areas.
The bright green of cucumbers and the vibrant red of ripe tomatoes create incredible visual appeal. Somehow food tastes better when it looks good. Mom always said we eat with our eyes!
Both cucumbers and tomatoes bring amazing nutritional benefits to the table. Cucumbers add low-calorie, crunchy, hydrating bulk, while tomatoes are rich in vitamins, antioxidants, and lycopene. This salad is not only beautiful, but it’s healthy and smart!
Gorgeous And Delicious Accents For Tomato And Cucumber Salad
Red onions are milder and sweeter than white or yellow onions, so the flavor doesn’t overwhelm; it just enhances the tomato and cucumber combination.
Slice them into thin slivers to add gentle piquancy and a subtle crunch to the mix. And let’s talk about that burst of beautiful magenta color they add! The artist in me just loves what they do to the appearance of this refreshing salad.
Fresh basil has a distinct aroma and flavor that pairs wonderfully with cucumbers and tomatoes. It is both sweet and peppery, and that taste adds depth to the dish.
Tear or make a chiffonade of the basil leaves and mix them in. When the basil releases its aromatic oil, it infuses the salad with the most amazing flavor! Basil also brings a subtle touch of brightness and freshness that complements all the vegetables.
Make A Simple Vinaigrette Dressing To Top It Off
Shake together red wine vinegar, olive oil, salt, and pepper, pour it over these beautiful veggies, and toss. Now chill this stunning salad for twenty minutes or more.
I had the rest of the salad I made last night for lunch today and shared it with our daughter. It tasted as good or even better than last night because of how the flavors married. I’ll keep making this one all summer, and I can’t wait to share it with my friends and the rest of the family!
Next time, I made add avocado and some feta cheese! What do you think sounds good?
This salad is a wonderful side for any main dish you can think of, and I know if you take it to a potluck or picnic, all you’ll bring home is an empty bowl and requests for the recipe.
- 1 average English cucumber sliced or cut into chunks
- 2 large ripe tomatoes diced
- ½ red onion thinly sliced
- 1 Tbsp fresh herb ssuch as basil
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
- Salt & pepper to taste
- Put the vegetables and herbs into a bowl.
- Shake together the oil, vinegar, salt, and pepper.
- Pour the vinaigrette over the veggies and chill for at least twenty minutes or overnight.
Summer eating is amazing! Vegetables are abundant and perfect! Here are some of our favorite summer recipes for you to try! Tomato Bruschetta, Southern Tomato Pie, Marinated Vegetable Salad, Sweet Corn Salad. If that’s making your mouth water, look for more recipes in the search bar!
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