Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Salad stripped down to its bare essentials

It's been an eventful week.

I welcomed my first 2 visitors from church, saying hi to them at the airport when they were brimming with healthy smiles on their faces and ended up waving goodbye to them 3 days later both struggling to consume anything after spending the weekend emulating Merlion. I hope they enjoyed their trip though, Sigh.

I also waved goodbye to my dear fiancee, who had been here for nearly 2 months, accompanying me through easily the most politically chaotic time I have ever experienced. Was really difficult to send her off, but oh well, hope she'll be back in no time.

Anyway, I realised that my previous pumpkin salad was a little complicated, simple, but needs many steps. It's not suitable for beginners to make. Now, I shall take away the oven, the lemon-squeezing, the pumpkin-hacking and teach you the EASIEST (yet relatively tasty) salad you will ever make.

The only ingredient, cherry tomatoes.

Cherry tomatoes because they are sweet, sour (so you can take away squeezing the lemon), doesn't need cooking, look really pretty and are easy to process. Of course, if you do not like tomatoes in the first place, then you can forget about this post, though I suggest you pay attention if you hate tomatoes but love ketchup, because I'll convert you soon. You need as much as you need to eat, wash them thoroughly and halve them.

To dress the tomatoes, you only need 4 ingredients. 4! Freshly ground black peppercorns (I insist on freshly ground), dry/fresh oregano, salt (oregano + tomato + salt = paradise) and good quality extra virgin olive oil.
You do not even need to make the dressing separately. Just dump all the tomatoes in a mixing bowl and season with a nice pinch of salt. Let the tomatoes sit for 10 minutes to let the salt draw out their delicious juices. Once this is done, glug in a good amount of extra virgin olive oil (for the shown amt of tomatoes, maybe at least 2-3 big tablespoonfuls of best quality oil) and toss the tomatoes, finishing off with some freshly crushed black pepper and a nice sprinkle of Oregano.
You're done! Tuck in!

For tonight, I baked myself a handful of Enoki mushroom to go with the tomato. Just add a teeny bit of butter, Kikkoman Japanese soya sauce and black pepper onto the mushroom and put them under 200degC for 15 minutes and it's done.
This has no relation with the salad though, I just like some fusion in my meals, like this oriental tasting Enoki vs the angmo-style salad.

I am not saying chips and beer are replaceable as snacks during football matches now that the World Cup fever is on, but having some delectable home-made salad for dinner or a starter to a meal would give you the nutritional balance you BADLY need during this body-destroying month.
Forget about the expensive jars of dressing you find on the supermarket shelves or the typical unhealthy mayonnaise and thousand island, you can actually make salads from absolute scratch. This tomato salad has been stripped down to the bare essentials and it is the minimum I would expect from you if I manage to see you next time!

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