What’s Cooking Wednesday: Tomato and Red Onion Salad

What\'s Cooking WednesdayOne of the best parts of having my mom here is a built-in buddy for markethopping–and I’m talking about every market within a 40 kilometer radius.

Of course we’re having lots of fun in our travels, but all this marketing also means we’ve been enjoying even more fresh fruits and vegetables than usual…more hands to carry market booty! Woohoo!

As you probably know, I love tomatoes. So for today’s What’s Cooking Wednesday I’m sharing my absolute favorite way to enjoy fresh summer tomatoes (those in the US especially, be careful about salmonella right now!).

Here they are paired with le cipolle rosse di Tropea,” the famous red onions from Tropea, a gorgeous town on the Tyrrhenian Sea, which is on the other side of Calabria (for those who don’t know, I’m on the Ionian Sea). These onions are some of the sweetest red onions in the world and are well-known not only in Italy but also throughout Europe–if you’re here, be sure to give them a try!

A tomato and red onion salad is a quick, easy, refreshing, delicious dish that is great at midday when the last thing I want to do is turn on the stove. It is dressed simply with olive oil, fresh basil, oregano and salt, and you’re welcome to throw in whatever other veggies you like; we especially enjoy cucumbers in this.

Along with the salad, P and I usually have something else uncooked with it, often local suppresata, cheese and bread but this is another favorite:

Bel paese & prosciutto crudo on Flickr

Bel Paese cheese spread on bread topped with prosciutto crudo

Doesn’t get any better than this after you’ve enjoyed a morning at the beach.

Tomato & Red Onion Salad

Tomato & red onion salad on Flickr

3 large tomatoes cut into bite-sized chunks
2 small red onions from Tropea, sliced
Olive oil, fresh basil, oregano and salt to taste

The longer you let the flavors mingle, the better this is, so I recommend making it early in the morning for lunchtime.

Buon appetito!

22 Beans of Wisdom to “What’s Cooking Wednesday: Tomato and Red Onion Salad”
  1. 06.25.2008

    Sounds like my kind of salad recipe -easy -and tasty! Only problem here would be I’d be the only one who would enjoy it because I’m the only one in the house that seems to like raw onions -red, white or yellow! Makes no never mind there but no one else will eat those yummy kind of things! (No taste, huh?)

    Jeni Hill Ertmer’s last blog post..I Do Hereby Bequeath…

    I was never very fond of raw onions until I came here, Jeni…these red ones are *so* tasty πŸ™‚

  2. I heart this recipe!!!

    I read your link. I had no idea 84% of the tomatoes in the States come from Mexico. Wow. I’m shocked.

    I try to buy locally whenever possible. The food just taste better. I am slowing getting into the mindset if something is out of season, don’t bother. It’s easier to do that here then in the States. Back in L.A. I would expect to find pretty much any type of food (except for fresh cherries) year round. That is not normal.

    nyc/caribbean ragazza’s last blog post..You’ve got mail and a police officer at your door.

    I was pretty surprised at that tomato statistic as well. Eighty-four percent is *so* much!

    But yes, buying locally and in season is definitely easier in Italy, and I got used to the seasonal eating pretty quickly. In fact, when we were at the supermarket the other day my mom spotted broccoli, and I told her to pass on it because it’s not in season! I find it funny that instead of seeing that broccoli as a treat, I was suspect πŸ˜‰

  3. Joanne at frutto della passione

    We love cold lunches too. And luckily we all love salads at my house. Add sliced meats and cheese and we are in heaven!

    Joanne at frutto della passione’s last blog post..Mmm… Canada Savory edition Maple glazed chicken and potatoes

    One of my summer favorites from America that has quickly become one of my Italian OH’s summer favorites is this pasta salad…add meats and cheeses and fresh basil and YUM πŸ™‚

  4. 06.25.2008

    I would love this salad. I absolutely adore tomatoes and red onions…if I would make it, I would add orange or yellow capsicum for color and flavor too.

    Sandier Pastures’s last blog post..World’s largest fountain to be built in Dubai

    Mmm, great addition indeed πŸ™‚

  5. 06.25.2008

    So simple, yet so good.

    running42k’s last blog post..Insurance

    My favorite combination πŸ™‚

  6. 06.25.2008

    Makes me hungry, even at 9 in the morning.

    thotlady’s last blog post..Vacation Bible School

    Hah, as my grandmother used to say, “Mangia! Mangia!”

  7. 06.25.2008

    Oh, Michelle, this is my very favorite kind of recipe – simple with highlights on the veggies. I can’t wait for our tomato season!

    jen of a2eatwrite’s last blog post..What’s Cooking Wednesday – Brunch with Anno and Mint Pesto

    I’m excited for you Jen!

  8. 06.25.2008

    Tomatos and red onions are just perfect together. This seems like the best of summer eating: fast, fresh, easy, and delicious. Like Jen, I can’t wait for our tomato season!

    anno’s last blog post..Sunday Scribblings: Happy Endings — A collection from some of my favorite books

    I love stews and such, but summer eating is definitely high up on my list of favorites πŸ™‚

  9. 06.25.2008

    Mmmmm. Tomatoes and onions are some of my favorite favorite favorite things. I can’t wait until things settle down with the tomatoes here so I don’t have to be afraid of dying whenever I eat them.

    Lara’s last blog post..No longer a dog person?

    I’m so sad about the salmonella thing too even though I’m not affected by it. Just be careful of where the tomatoes come from and you should be fine (almost all states have been excluded from the “dangerous” list).

  10. 06.25.2008

    ok…..I LOVE that I can read your blog, get hungry and actually BE IN ITALIA, so that I can eat something that might actually be similar to what you are talking about.

    I’m in Firenze, sweating and getting fat. La dolce vita, Michelle.

    Woohoo! Lucky you Karen πŸ™‚

  11. 06.25.2008

    Just our sort of lunch/snack…I really try now to buy things in season, and always locally…otherwise we just go without.

    anne’s last blog post..Catching up with my Blogging Friends.

    Something I’ll be doing of more this summer is preserving various things I’d like to have around even when they’re out of season…perhaps even freezing some tomatoes for winter sauces. Mmm….

  12. If that were my last meal on earth, I’d be happy. Nothing better than summer tomatoes and red onion. Yum yum.
    So glad you are having a wonderful time with your mum and I so look forward to hearing about your travels and time together. Hi Michelle’s mum.

    collette~all over the map’s last blog post..Free Samples of Lovely Images from Dover Publishing

    Mum says hi right back Collette πŸ™‚

  13. 06.26.2008

    Not to take anything away from your recipe, but your mom has been here a long time, other people have been doing your blogging for you and now we get a SALAD? As the Sambuca ads used to say, when Caesar returned from a long day at the war, he did not have a salad.

    Do I have to come down there and pound you? WE WANT TO SEE WHAT’S HAPPENING.

    Judith in Umbria’s last blog post..Schedule change: the baby has arrived!

    I wish, just for once, you could open up and share your feelings Judith. Holding all that in has to be tough πŸ˜‰

    Hope today’s post soothes you a bit…..

  14. 06.27.2008

    Delicious…Now if you add some olives, a slice of feta, and some sliced green peppers, you get a Greek “village” salad!

    Irene’s last blog post..Thankful Thursday-Life

    *Love* feta cheese Irene; always so happy when I find it here πŸ™‚

  15. 06.27.2008

    This is such a great summer time, any day of the week salad. especially b/c it’s so easy to make. in our home, growing up, tomatoes and onion were always seen on cuban bread with a bit of olive oil and salt/pepper! yum.

    FlaNboyantEats’s last blog post..Spicy Seared Scallops W/ Mango & Cilantro Relish

    Mmm…I see we have a lot in common with Cuba πŸ™‚

  16. 06.29.2008

    Delicious! One of my favourite salads. Try adding coriander (cilantro) and avocado. Yum!

    african vanielje’s last blog post..Pain de Compagne & a sourdough starter

    Great suggestions! Our avocados here aren’t the greatest, but I’ll keep an eye out for some good ones for this πŸ™‚

  17. Antonio Agostinelli

    Hi!! im from Venezuela, but I don’t speak english so good :S then im gonna write in Italian (I hope that you can understand me :D).

    Io andavo cercando qualche orientazzione pero fare una sorpresa alla mia fidanzata πŸ˜€ e o trovato questa pagina!! veramente e magnifica!!!! sei bravissima a cucinare πŸ˜€ io gia avevo qualche idea da che potevo fare, ma adesso dopo di vedere tutto questo e magnifico quello che faro per questa sera :D.

    Grazie mille e complimenti!!!.

    O aggiunto la tua paggina ai mie favorite :D.


    Sono contentissima che hai trovato qualcosa di buono qua πŸ™‚ Buon appetito!

  18. Rebecca

    I soooh miss the fresh veggies in Europe….gosh, I hardly ever buy tomatoes here as they are hard and tastless….maybe they would not be such a disappointment is I could “not remember”!

    Looking forward to the ‘home growns’ later on in the season…we’ll have about six weeks of tomato delight..during which time I will be using this salad recipe!

    Even here, Rebecca, the tomatoes aren’t nearly as good now as they will be…this is the first day I’d even consider doing one of these as it’s just not time for the freshies yet…but we’re getting there!

  19. 08.27.2010

    I love this recipe, any salad at this time of the year is good to have. Tomatoes and red onion is wow. I’d add a little bit green pepper to it.


  1. [...] to know what’s happening here in Calabria (see her pleading comment to yesterday’s post here... bleedingespresso.com/2008/06/love-thursday-love-on-the-rocks.html
Michelle FabioMichelle Fabio is an American attorney-turned-freelance writer living in her family's ancestral village in Calabria, Italy and savoring simplicity one sip at a time. 

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