You can't get more local than your own backyard. These cherry tomatoes, which I planted last season, seeded themselves and returned this season. The surprise crop is what my coworker, Apollo, calls "free money." I get dozens of cherry tomatoes every week, and I decided that for this Farmer's Market/Local Produce #SundaySupper event, I would grill clusters of these tomatoes and, along with goat cheese and a homemade vinaigrette, make a salad. When all was done, this Grilled Cherry Tomato and Goat Cheese Salad was "saying something"--meaning it was smoky, creamy good.
It was mild day here. Only in the eighties. What a break for me, because for once this summer, I was doing the grilling rather than being grilled. You see, my patio faces west with the south at nine-o-clock. That's why it's hell's patio. Most days in the summer, either I'm not grilling much or I'm grilling at 7 a.m. or after 7 p.m. But not today. Today was alternately cloudy and partly sunny. I deserved a grilling day like this.
Grilling the tomatoes was easy. I lined the grill with foil and sprayed it with non-stick spray. I grilled the tomato clusters for 15 minutes. Some of the tomatoes were still green, but I grilled them anyway, hoping for two unique tastes. My hopes were realized. Charred green tomato taste almost meaty and the acidity is an interesting contrast to the sweet smokiness of the grilled red tomatoes. The cool, velvety goat cheese and the warm, smoky tomato taste is sublime.
A simple, light Dijon mustard vinaigrette brought the flavors together. If you don't have a vegetable garden, even an accidental one like me, you can likely find cherry tomatoes, still on the vine, at a local farmer's market. If you have a local source for goat cheese, I'll be jealous. When you gather all your ingredients, you must make this amazing salad. Quick, before summer is gone.
Disclosure: The dill used in this recipe was donated by Litehouse Foods, and I am a paid contributor to their blog. The opinions on this blog are, as always, my own.
Recipe: Grilled Cherry Tomato and Goat Cheese Salad (Serves 2)
2 clusters cherry tomatoes on the vine, rinse and patted dry
4 ounces fresh, mild French goat cheese, sliced into two rounds
1 teaspoon fresh or freeze-dried dill (I used Litehouse Foods Instantly Fresh Dill)
- Spray aluminum foil with cooking spray and place on hot grill. Do not spray oil directly on grill; otherwise, there will be flames. Immediately place clusters of tomatoes, vine side up, on aluminum foil on the grill or directly in a grill pan over medium-high heat.
- Grill tomatoes for 10-15 minutes or until they begin to sizzle and caramelize. Watch the tomatoes and move to a cooler spot on the grill, if necessary, to prevent burning.
- Remove tomatoes from grill and set aside. Plate rounds of goat cheese on serving plates. Top with grilled tomatoes. Drizzle one to two tablespoons of vinaigrette (see recipe below), over tomatoes and goat cheese. Garnish with dill.
Recipe: Light Mustard Vinaigrette (makes approximately one cup)
1.5 teaspoons Dijon Mustard
1 lemon, juiced
1/4 cup orange juice
Kosher salt to taste
White pepper to taste
1/2 cup light olive oil or grapeseed oil
- Put first five ingredients in a blender and blend at medium speed.
- Add oil slowly, in a thin stream, while ingredients are blending.
- Pour vinaigrette into a cruet or other server and let sit five minutes to allow flavors to meld before dressing salad.
More Recipes with Local Ingredients
I'm not the only one who cooked up local food this week. Here are links to recipes by my fellow #SundaySupper bloggers, who went to farmer's markets and to other local places to score local produce and other foods. Visit their sites and see their recipes, then join us at 7 p.m. EST (Sunday evening) for our Twitter Chat. Check out the Pinterest board for all the great food images in one place.
Garlic Scape Dip from The Girl In the Little Red Kitchen
Onion Bacon Jam with Bread n' Brie from Gotta Get Baked
Kale & Pepita Pesto from girlichef
Garden Quinoa Salad from The Urban Mrs
Grilled Cherry Tomato and Goat Cheese Salad from Pescetarian Journal
Watermelon-Feta Salad with Pomegranate Drizzle from The Weekend Gourmet
Soups & Sides
Watermelon Gazpacho from Jane's Adventures in Dinner
Classic Gazpacho from Curious Cuisiniere
Pea Soup from Small Wallet, Big Appetite
Pickled Garlic Scapes from kimchi MOM
Cheesy Zucchini Hodge Podge from Cupcakes & Kale Chips
Succotash from Magnolia Days
3 Easy Japanese Spinach Recipes from NinjaBaking.com
Michigan-Made Meal with Seasoned Potato Chips from Foxes Love Lemons
Summer Veggie Pizza from Country Girl In The Village
Tomato Pie from The Hand That Rocks The Ladle
Kitchen Sink Vegetable Curry from What Smells So Good?
Margherita Pizza from Growing Up Gabel
Cheesy Zucchini Fritters from Cindy's Recipes and Writings
Three Sauces with Summer Herbs to Transform a Simple Grilled Dinner from Cook the Story
Vegetable Quesadillas from Cookin' Mimi
Mushroom Scallion Risotto from Vintage Kitchen Notes
Lemony Summer Linguine with Grilled Vegetables from Neighborfood
Pasta alla Norma Nuda from Juanita's Cocina
Arugula Pizza from Family Foodie
Peach Cobbler from That Skinny Chick Can Bake
Coconut Cherry Bars from Killer Bunnies, Inc
Lightened Up Peach and Blueberry Cobbler from Peanut Butter and Peppers
Cherry Brandy Cobbler from The Wimpy Vegetarian
Peach Maple Ice Cream from Pies and Plots
Cherry Clafoutis from Food Lust People Love
Roasted Figs with Caramel, Honey Ice Cream and Aged Balsamic from Crazy Foodie Stunts
Peach Ice Cream Paletas from Basic N Delicious
Gluten Free Sour Cherry Cake from No One Likes Crumbley Cookies
Join the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter today! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm EST. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. Check out our#SundaySupper Pinterest board for more fabulous recipes and food photos.