Kitchen Hack: Cherry Tomatoes

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The farmer's market is in full swing at our shopping mall in Fremont, CA. It is exciting because there are a lot of farmers and the parking lot is so full! I am always happy to see the farmers and to find so many great things!

Today I found cherry tomatoes and these were only $2.

Of course I found a few more items. I am told that the little red peppers are very hot while the yellow, green, and orange ones are very mild. I loved their colors! Also pictured are chives, cherry tomatoes, Asian eggplants, mint, sweet peppers, red onions, and chives.

I decided to make a salsa with the cherry tomatoes because all you have to do is cut them in half. And then you can use the peppers, cilantro, and onions that are so appealing right now. The big bunch of green herbs is cilantro and comes complete with the roots!

So here are the four things you can make with the cherry tomatoes.

Salsa: slice the cherry tomatoes in half and then add chopped red onion, chopped hot pepper, chopped sweet peppers, fresh lime juice, and chopped fresh cilantro. It is so easy you don't need a recipe. Start with tomatoes and add the rest of the chopped ingredients to your own taste. The juice of one lime or lemon will add a fresh bite and more flavor.

Salsa is very versatile! You can use this salsa as a snack with chips. It can go over top of grilled items. Or in tacos. And it can go on top of a salad, too.

Here is a salad made with fresh baby greens, my fresh cherry tomato salsa, and roasted pistachio nuts. I copied my Vietnamese friends who always put fresh herbs on everything and I added a big sprig of mint. The drink is a delicious chilled green tea with fruits but that will be discussed in a future post.

I also used the cherry tomatoes to make a delicious fresh veggie snack platter. I am featuring the carrots, celery, and sweet peppers from the market. I kept the celery sticks long and thin so they would be more fun to eat and more attractive. The dip featured is a baba ganoush eggplant dip found at the market. You can also use plain yogurt, hummus, salsa, or bean dip, too.

Finally, here is one more idea for the cherry tomatoes. Roast them in the oven the next time you are cooking chicken or fish. I put them in a ceramic baking dish with diced zucchini and yellow squash and then dabbed with a little olive oil and roasted them for about 20 minutes which is the length of time needed to cook most pieces of chicken or fish at 400 degrees. I finished all with balsamic vinegar and fresh herbs.

Enjoy! I will be featuring more dishes and kitchen hacks from my farmer's market excursions this month. This would make a great cooking demo because you can show one item like cherry tomatoes and several ways to make them and repurpose them all week. By focusing on one ingredient it is easier to become proficient in the kitchen.

I found a neat way to make a berry and wine compote to serve over fresh fruit - stay tuned!

Here is a handout for you:

Cherry Tomato Handout


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