Monday, September 26, 2016

Life, it's bigger

Yeah so I feel like the presidential debates might literally determine whether humankind exists in 50 years or not, so watching them has been a bit of a stressor for me.




I made this tomato salad during the first set of presidential debates, and I have to say that it was overall a calming experience.  My high school health teacher might have called it a source of eustress.  Now, I'm not all vegan vegan vegan these days, but I have to say that this combination of crunchy almonds and nutty-sweet sunflower sprouts worked together to give the whole dish the character of a BLT, without any meat or dairy.  Next time, a few sprinkles of smoked salt and brown sugar might be welcome.

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Tomato salad with sprouts and fried almonds
Serves 3-4

2-3 lbs tomatoes, ideally a mix of some heirloom and some cherry
a bunch of scallions, sliced and separated into whites and greens
1/2 cup (4 oz) almonds
4 oz sprouts (e.g., sunflower, bean, clover), washed and dried
olive oil
kosher salt
black pepper

Slice the tomatoes into rough chunks, about 3/4" - 1" in size.  Halve any cherry tomatoes.  Toss them with a few large pinches of salt and let sit for 20-30 minutes while you prepare the rest of the dish.

Add 3-4 tbsp olive oil to a pan and set it over the lowest heat setting possible on your stove.  Add the sliced whites of the scallions, with a few pinches of salt.  Cook over low heat, shaking occasionally, until slightly browned, around 10 minutes.  Pour the scallion whites and their oil into a small jar.

Add another 1-2 tbsp olive oil to the same pan.  Roughly chop the almonds and add them to the pan, still over low heat.  Cook, shaking every 2-3 minutes. until the almonds are lightly browned, about 5-10 minutes.  Season with kosher salt and black pepper, then pour into a small bowl.

Pour any reserved juices from the tomatoes into the same jar as the scallions and their oil, then add 4-5 chunks of tomato.  Using an immersion blender, puree until a thick dressing is created.

Toss the sprouts together with the marinated tomatoes, almonds, scallion greens, and the dressing.  Serve with a few pieces of toast rubbed with garlic.