Go Back
+ servings

Tomato Basil Salad

This tomato salad recipe with Thai basil is the perfect dish to celebrate a summer garden. In making this recipe you learn how to peel tomatoes and why sometimes it's the small details like this that make a big difference in the results.

Course Appetizer, Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine American
Keyword summer picnic recipes, salad for party
Prep Time 18 minutes
Cook Time 2 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 170 kcal
Author Valentina K. Wein


  • 2 pounds heirloom tomatoes peeled
  • ½ cup packed fresh basil leaves, washed and dried
  • cup red onion, thinly sliced
  • teaspoons garlic, minced
  • tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ cup goat cheese, crumbled
  • salt and freshly round black pepper


Peel the Tomatoes

  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil, and prepare a medium-sized bowl of ice water. Set the ice water next to the stove where you're working. Next, use a sharp paring knife to remove the tomato stem and root. Then use the same knife to mark an "X" on the bottom of each tomato, trying to only slit the skin and not really cut into the flesh of the tomato. Place them in the boiling water and leave them just until you see the skin begin to peel away from the "X" on the bottom. Use a slotted spoon to remove the tomatoes and place them directly into the ice water. (This "shocks" the tomatoes, stopping the cooking process, and helping them to maintain their bright color.) Once the tomatoes are cool, the skin can easily be peeled off the tomato, beginning at the X.

Make the Salad

  1. Cut the peeled tomatoes into bite-sized wedges and gently use your thumb to remove as many seeds as you easily can. Add the tomato wedges to a serving bowl and toss them with the basil leaves and onion slices.

  2. Just before serving combine the garlic with the vinegar and oil and toss this mixture into the salad. Season generously with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Sprinkle the goat cheese on top, and serve immediately!