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the haas machine: Tomato, Avocado, & Mozzarella Salad

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Tomato, Avocado, & Mozzarella Salad

When it comes to summer cookin', there's no messing around with the oven at our house. We don't have central air or any kind of air conditioning on our main level, so turning on the oven literally makes our house sauna-like. I was painfully reminded of this the other night as I preheated my oven to 375 to pop in a pan of frozen alfredo lasagna that I had made a few weeks earlier & froze for future use. When I had made it originally I thought, "won't it be so nice to have a scrumptious meal that just has to be warmed?" I didn't really think through the fact that it would eventually get hot this summer & by cooking this lasagna, it would heat up our entire house while it baked for 45 minutes, thus making me a crabby, sweaty mess.

So that sort of kicked me in the pants & motivated me to dig deep into my "anti-oven" cooking collection.  I don't know how many times I've literally said out loud that I want to make a list of all our favorite non-oven meals so that we can eat in comfort & peace this summer, but now I'm finally getting to it. Over the next couple of weeks, I'll be posting mostly "anti-oven" meals & then I'll make one big list that you (& I) can refer to often, especially once we get into the really thick weather of July & August.
So today, I share with you one of our favorite side dishes- Tomato, Avocado, & Mozzarella Salad. It's a total crowd pleaser, full of flavor, & best of all, extremely nourishing. This salad works best when you make it & then immediately scarf it down because of the avocados (the lemon juice does help them keep their color, but it's still best if eaten sooner rather than later). Left-overs are not encouraged.

What I'm really going to love about this recipe this summer is that I'll get to use some of my fresh cherry tomatoes, basil, & parsley all from my own garden! Everything is growing so intensely right now, so I'm hoping to have a nice bounty of plump veggies & herbs to cook with this summer. I'm still dreaming of a lemon & avocado trees...maybe next year?

This salad can be quite adaptable, too. You can eat it simply as a side, or you can get all crazy & wrap it up with a tortilla or make it into a panini-type sandwich. You could even toss the ingredients into an omelette or with some pasta, but that would involve a bit of stovetop use. My favorite way to eat it is with a toasty baguette, maybe with a little meat somethin' somethin' on the grill. Mmmm....

It's simple, refreshing, & satisfying, my friends. So stay cool & eat your hearts out.

Tomato, Avocado, & Mozzarella Salad
1 container cherry tomatoes, cut in half
1 carton fresh mozzarella cheese pearls, drained
1 avocado, peeled & diced
1/3 cup basil, julienned
2 tablespoons fresh parsley
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup olive oil

In a large bowl, combine the tomatoes, mozzarella, basil & parsley & then set aside. In a small bowl, whisk the lemon juice, oil, salt & pepper & drizzle over the tomato mixture. Cover & refrigerate for 1 hour before serving. Just before serving the salad, mix in the chopped avocados, making sure everything is evenly coated.

Recipe adapted from Everything Fabulous

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At June 27, 2013 at 2:27 PM , Blogger Lindsay Moe said...

I just saw an avocado tree for sale on Craigslist a few weeks ago! I don't know how well it would do in this climate though...

At July 15, 2013 at 6:17 PM , Anonymous Sarah @ Play 2 Learn with Sarah said...

This sounds amazing! I love tomato & mozzarella salad, but have never added avocado! Gotta go to the store NOW!

At July 16, 2013 at 11:46 AM , Blogger Gillian Haas said...

Oh, it's so fresh & satisfying! I hope you like it!


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