Organic tomatoes and zucchini are top seasonal produce picks, and they marry as well as Sharon and Ozzy Osbourne (minus the sex, drugs and rock ’n’ roll).
In the hands of former Top Chef contestant Fabio Viviani, executive chef/owner of L.A. hotspots Firenze Osteria and Café Firenze Italian Restaurant and Martini Bar, they’re the foundation for today’s savory appetizer.
As the photo illustrates, Viviani’s Roasted Tomato & Zucchini Salad is a restaurant-quality dish, with vertical stacks of veggies and cheese that are pleasing to both the palate and eyes.
Best of all, the ingredients should be available at a well-stocked natural and organic food store—and many are likely on display at your local farmers’ market.
Roasted Tomato & Zucchini Salad
6 Roma tomatoes
Extra-virgin olive oil (for drizzling)
2 garlic cloves, minced
Salt and pepper (to taste)
2 balls of buffalo mozzarella (6 ounces each), cut into 3/4-inch slices
Approximately 10 large leaves of fresh basil
Shaved Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon paprika
- Cut tomatoes into 1/2-inch slices.
- Cut zucchini lengthwise into 1/8-inch ribbons.
- Season both with minced garlic, salt and pepper; drizzle with olive oil.
- Roast on grill, with cut side up, for about 10 minutes, or until evenly roasted.
- Mix the dressing ingredients in a small bowl.
- To assemble the salad, place the tomato, zucchini (folded) and mozzarella on top of each other, like a tower, with a basil leaf in between layers. Season layers with salt, pepper and a drizzle of dressing.
- Sprinkle with shaved Parmesan cheese.
Photo courtesy of Bertolli