Tomato Salad with Warm almond dressing
We hosted a Winemaker Dinner in July focused on Library Wines from Jespersen Ranch. We had a few vegetarians attend and wanted to prepare a worthy substitute for the Abalone Broth pairing planned for our 2016 Reserve Chardonnay. This tomato carpaccio was absolutely stunning served alongside the wine — the light almond topping mirrored the wine’s delicate oak flavors. The Chardonnay’s tension and bright acidity were excellent with the yellow and orange tomatoes, and a few leaves from our garden popped against the wine’s still youthful fruit flavors.
If you can’t get your hands on a Library bottle of our Chardonnay, any current release Reserve Chardonnay is a worthy substitute.
1 cup almond oil
1 cup niner olive oil
1x leek, white and light green parts sliced thinly and washed and drained
4x garlic cloves, peeled and sliced thin
½ — ¾ cup Marcona almonds, chopped
salt to taste
Add all cold ingredients to a saucepot. Cook on low heat until fragrant and leeks and garlic are cooked through. Remove from heat. If making in advance, temper the condiment to room temperature or barely warm before using (warmer will make it more fragrant).
This is also good drizzled over grilled leeks and onions, seafood, poached chicken and dipping sauce for bread with soft cheese!
2 lbs large heirloom yellow tomatoes, sliced as thin as possible (we like yellow/orange tomatoes with our library chardonnay)
fresh cracked black pepper
banyuls or other good wine vinegar to taste
a few leaves/herbs/flowers to garnish
Right before serving, slice tomatoes as thin as possible. Arrange around platters, with slight overlap at most (we want as much tomato surface area as possible). Season with salt and pepper and a slight drizzle of vinegar. Then, mix up the condiment and drizzle over the tomatoes to cover. Garnish, if desired, with onion sprouts, radish or mustard flowers (often found wild around town) or society garlic flowers (probably in neighbors flower beds — you’ll know it when you walk by, the odor is strong. A little goes a long way).