Juicy and deliciously misshapen, late-summer's heirloom tomatoes are currently flooding the markets, and our kitchens are bursting with BLTs and fresh tomato sauce. William Kovel, the chef-owner of Cambridge, Massachusetts's soon-to-open Catalyst, lets the unmatched flavor of the fruit shine, dressing the tomatoes with a vibrant vinaigrette made with fresh coriander berries. The green buds, which taste like a blend of fresh cilantro and dried coriander, are ground with garlic, Champagne vinegar and olive oil before being gently tossed with the diced tomatoes. Kovel's simple dish is a full-flavored taste of late summer.
Heirloom-Tomato Salad with Mizuna and Coriander Vinaigrette
Recipe adapted from William Kovel, Catalyst, Cambridge, MA
Yield: 6 servings
Cook Time: 10 minutes
1 tablespoon fresh coriander berries (purchase in season at the farmers' market or substitute dried coriander seeds)
2 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons Champagne vinegar
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ cup plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
6 large heirloom tomatoes, cored and diced
1 tablespoon chives, finely chopped
1 medium shallot, finely chopped
1 cup mizuna leaves (if mizuna isn't available, substitute arugula)
1. With a mortar and pestle, grind together the fresh or dried coriander, garlic, Champagne vinegar and salt until a fine paste forms. Gradually whisk in the olive oil. (Alternately, grind the dried coriander in a spice mill, then combine with the garlic, vinegar, salt and oil using a small food processor.)
2. In a medium bowl, toss the tomatoes with the coriander vinaigrette. Stir in the chives and shallot.
3. Divide the tomatoes among six plates; reserve the tomato liquid from the bowl. Gently toss the mizuna with the reserved liquid and garnish each plate with the dressed mizuna. Serve immediately.