Jules’s Saturday Afternoon Tomato Salad
(aka my favorite tomato salad)
serves 6 as a side dish
6 ripe tomatoes
fresh garlic sliced very thinly
shallots sliced thinly
parsley rough chop
1 ½ oz red wine vinegar
6 oz good olive oil
4 oz butter
panko (dried fresh bread crumbs)
Split the leeks in half lengthwise. Cut the top few inches of tough green leaves and cut the beard off the root and discard. Wash thoroughly opening up the leaves especially near the root. Cook in boiling salted, uncovered water for about 20 minutes, til quite soft. Plunge into a waiting ice bath so as to retain the green color. Once cooled, drain well. Slice the leeks into one inch sections but keep them in their original form. Lay the leeks on a long serving dish with 1 ½” sides, which will accommodate them easily.
Slice the tomatoes first in half through the core and then into thin uniform slices and lay them over the leeks. Fan them slightly. (If the tomatoes that you’re using are less than beautifully ripe, peel them by scoring an “X” in the bottom and plunging them for 5-8 seconds in boiling water and then straight into an ice bath. The skin should peel off with ease.)
In another bowl, make the crust by combining all ingredients. Refrigerate for a few minutes to gain pliability. With the palm of your hand or with a rolling pin, form a flat “dough” with the crust and cut it (or roll) it to 2”x 4” strips. Place on a baking sheet.
In a separate bowl prepare the dressing: by combining all the ingredients, olive oil last. Spoon the dressing over the tomatoes and leeks.
Brown the crust off in a hot oven or broiler and lay it over the tomato salad using a spatula. Serve while the crust is still warm (while the rest of the salad is cool to room temp).