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I’m sure many, if not all, of you know who Penny de los Santos is. She is an award winning photographer, senior contributing photographer at Saveur Magazine and contributor to National Geographic. Penny is a truly talented photographer with a very kind aura. She recently teamed up with Creative Live to stream a live 3 day workshop on food photography. Did you guys catch that live? Sadly I didn’t hear about it until about 1 week later. Thankfully Creative Live has the whole 3 day course available for download on their website incase you missed it, like me. No I’m not being paid to say this.
I’m telling you guys about it because I was so moved by Penny’s lessons. After watching the videos I was left in awe of her talent, inspirational and motivational words. She comes off as a genuinely good person happy to help share her knowledge. After watching the videos I went back to her website and read many of her posts as well as admired her photography. I just had to send her a message saying know how much what she said meant to me. I know I’m sounding like a stalker, but I promise I’m not. You know what? She wrote back a sweet little note. With all of her success and busy schedule, she was still kind enough to respond to her fan mail. That says alot in my book.
One of the many posts that stood out the most to me was a recipe for “Tomato, Peach and Basil Salad” Looking or should I say drooling over her photos and recipe I knew I had to make that salad immediately. So I did and here it is for you today. I do have to tell you that I changed it a little bit from her recipe.
- She used peaches and I used nectarines.
- Penny used garden tomatoes and I changed it to small grape tomatoes.
- Another step I added was to grilled the nectarines.
- Since raw garlic does not agree with me I decided to cook it a little in the oil from the nectarines. But you can use the raw garlic if you like.
- I also sprinkled a little cayenne over the salad. This added another depth of flavors and it tasted great!
Adapted from Penny de los Santos’s “Tomato, Peach and Basil Salad”
Makes 1 large serving or 2 small side servings:
10 grape tomatoes, cut in half
large bunch fresh basil, finely chopped
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 tsp dijon mustard
1 tsp dark brown sugar
pinch of salt
large pinch of freshly ground black pepper
1 tbsp water
large pinch ground cayenne pepper, optional
11/2 tbsp EVOO (extra virgin olive oil) *
2 whole garlic cloves*
* Hold off on adding these to the balsamic until step #2*
2. In a screw top jar pour the oil used to cook the nectarines. Mince the garlic and add to the jar along with all of the balsamic ingredients. Shake well until all ingredients are well combined. Taste and adjust if necessary.
3. In a large salad bowl gently toss the tomatoes, basil and nectarines. Pour the balsamic over the fruits again gently tossing. OR you can serve the balsamic on the side and serve as you like.