Summer is the best time for beautiful vibrant colors in the garden and it’s the best time for tomatoes! I couldn’t resist picking up these brilliant heirloom tomatoes at the weekend. I’ll warn you, they were pricy (3-4 bucks a pound!) but their taste is worth it, I promise you. In order to ‘qualify’ for this weeks Summer Fest I put them together with some French Beans (Haricot Verts) and since our herb garden is booming, we have cilantro out the ying yang so I decided to make……cilantro pesto. A lovely fresh twist on the usual basil pesto!
The key here with the beans is to just cook them until they go to this bright green color and are still nice ‘n’ crisp. The contrast of the sweet tomatoes and the fresh taste of my garden cilantro is light yet full of flavor. If you’re having bbq this weekend, make this–It’ll go down a storm.
3 lbs heirloom tomatoes – make the trip to your Farmers’ Market–defo worth it for these!
1 lb French beans – trimmed
Makes 2 cups (extra for another time)
2 bunches cilantro – packed
2 cups baby spinach – packed
1 lemon – zested
1/2 lemon – juiced
2 tablespoons toasted pine nuts – toast in a dry heated saute pan for 3-4 minutes stirring periodically until browned
1/4 cup grated Parmesan (low fat preferably)
1 1/2 cups olive oil
S&P to taste
Add all pesto ingredients in a food processor, except for olive oil. Blend and while blitzing gradually pour in olive oil. Season with ¼ tsp. salt and ¼ tsp. pepper. Done.
Blanch the beans in a pot of boiling salted water for 30 seconds until bright green color. Drain and refresh in bowl of ice water until completely chilled, Drain.
To assemble salad: Lay slices of the heirlooms around platter. Toss the french beans in enough pesto to coat and lay in middle of platter. Drizzle a little pesto over each tomato and season with S&P to taste. That’s it! Don’t be afraid to try all the colors of heirloom tomatoes. Ask your local vendor which ones will be the best and tuck in!
All recipes are made with the finest quality farmers market whole foods, natural and non-processed ingredients as much as possible