If you don’t have access to heirlooms, any summer garden tomatoes will do. Prepare the tomatoes close to the time the salad will be served, because they will lose flavor if refrigerated.

Serves 6 to 8

• 2 pounds mixed heirloom tomatoes (include green, yellow, and red)

• 1/2 loaf French or Italian bread, cut into cubes (3 to 4 cups)

• 2 tablespoons olive oil

• 1 teaspoon minced fresh garlic

• Salt and pepper

• Red wine vinaigrette (below)

• 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, torn


1. Cut the tomatoes in various ways: small wedges; diced chunks; a few thick, quartered slices; and whole and halved cherry tomatoes. Place in a bowl and set aside.

2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place cubed bread on a baking sheet and drizzle with oil. Mix in the garlic, and season with salt and pepper. Bake the bread until lightly golden, about 12 to 15 minutes. Set aside.

3. Just before serving, drain the tomatoes of excess liquid and add the desired amount of vinaigrette. Place in a wide serving dish and top with croutons and basil.


Red wine vinaigrette

• 1/2 cup olive oil

• 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar

• 1 tablespoon finely minced shallots

• 1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley, thyme, oregano, and/or chives

• Salt and pepper

1. In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, vinegar, shallots, and fresh herbs of your choosing. Season with salt and pepper.