My friend Angelina is the kind of Italian cook I wish I was. She's a beautiful, modern mom of four-year old Sophia whose got a sly sense of humor that I love and yet when she talks cuisine she's all old world. I don't dare ever have her to my house for lasagna, even though it's my best Italian dish. And, I'm Italian, by the way.
Sophia and Scarlett were classmates last year in junior kindergarten. At the afternoon pickups, for the better part of the year, my mouth would water as Angelina casually rattled off what she had planned for dinner. Obviously, all the ingredients for said dinner were sitting in the car after having been picked up fresh that afternoon. She'd also dole out the location of her special food haunts. There was the seafood market that she swore by and the best place for fresh produce. I couldn't wait to get her on the site.
Finally, one afternoon, I talked her into taking some pictures of her food. "Just send me a shot of something you make for dinner, " I said. Here I thought I'd get one amazing looking dish. No word of a lie, I think I got six, and this was for ONE dinner. So, needless to say, you'll see more great recipes from Angelina here again. I just couldn't resist sharing this salad with you. It's full of juicy tomatoes and other seasonal vegetables, and is the perfect accompaniment to most summer dinner entrees. Or, if you're Angelina, five other dinner options.
Summer Fiesta Salad
2 pints of little tomatoes, quartered
1/4 cup of finely chopped red onion
2–3 stalks of celery,chopped in bite size pieces
1 red bell pepper, chopped in bite size pieces
1/2 cucumber, chopped in bite size pieces
Shave 1/2 a large clove of garlic
1/4 cup of olive oil
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
salt and pepper to taste
Quarter tomatoes and finely chop red onion, celery, cucumber and red pepper in chunk sizes so it's easy for kids to grab with their fork. Toss all the vegetables in a large mixing bowl. Using the fine side of a cheese grater, shave garlic into the salad. Add olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper, and toss. Chill for about an hour and serve.