The Jewish New Year
I can’t believe we’re here. Rosh Hashanah, is just ONE WEEK AWAY! Surely that means your ovens are fired up, tablecloths are freshly laundered and you’re ready to cook up a storm for the Jewish New Year. Oh, and don’t call me Shirley. 🙂
As the tradition goes on Rosh Hashanah to eat a “new fruit”, pomegranates are a common one at many holiday tables. So why not incorporate this tart, sweet fruit into this light and refreshing tomato salad with fresh herbs? It’s the perfect counterpart for some end-of-summer-ripe tomatoes and freshly picked herbs.
A little Inspiration First…
I didn’t necessarily just dream up this recipe in the middle of the night. I first got the inspiration from flipping through Yotam Ottolenghi’s cookbook Plenty More: Vibrant Vegetable Cooking from London’s Ottolenghi and WOW! My mouth waters instantly as I read through all of the glorious ways he prepares vegetables. Roasted, steamed, raw, grilled, braised. If you think veggies are only good for salads, well think again!
One of the first recipes in his cookbook is a tomato pomegranate salad with fresh oregano, pomegranate molasses and a kitchen-sink-load of spices. Okay, so no molasses on-hand. But not to fret! We have some kosher Trader Joe’s pomegranate vinegar to do the trick! All I did for this salad dressing was mix that with some olive oil, salt, and pepper (sumac would be good in this too, with that bright, lemony flavor to accentuate the flavors). And that’s it! Just let the fresh ingredients do the talking.
Another new spin on this recipe? Adding fresh mint and basil! Mostly because I already had some growing on my porch but because I love these 2 herbs mixed together. And tomato and basil? Well that’s just a match made in heaven.
This recipe also calls for bell peppers, but I thought “oh, the Thai chilies from my porch will be a great addition!”
I LOVE spicy food, but these were STRONG and I was breathing fire in no time. So too potent for this raw salad. Bottom line, I highly recommend to use bell peppers instead or use a bit more heat like a serrano pepper or even a jalapeno.
So there you have it, dear readers. A perfect start to your Rosh Hashanah seder meal to bring in the new fruits. And from your team here at Meat Your Vegetables, we want to wish you a K’siva V’Chasima Tova – may you be written and inscribed for a happy and healthy sweet new year! Chag Sameach!
- 3 Tomatoes, chopped I used a variety of fresh heirloom tomatoes - yellow, red and a mix of colors, but use whatever looks fresh at the market
- 1 1/4 cup Pomegranate arils A great trick to get the arils out of the pomegranate: Fill a large bowl with water and place in your sink. Cut the pomegranate in half and in the bowl, under water, use your hands to pop out the seeds/arils. The white pith will float to the top and you'll have the seeds in the bottom of the bowl!
- 1 Bell pepper, diced Or use a Serrano or Jalapeno pepper (ribs and seeds removed - or keep 'em in for extra heat!)
- 1 Handful Basil - torn, or chopped
- 1 Handful Mint - torn, or chopped
- 1 Drizzle Pomegranate Vinegar If you can't find this at Trader Joe's or anywhere, just substitute apple cider and add a splash of lemon juice
- 1 Drizzle Extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 tsp Salt
- 1/4 tsp Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 Squeeze Fresh Lemon
Add the tomatoes, pomegranate, pepper, mint and basil into a big bowl.
Drizzle the vinegar and oil and sprinkle the salt and pepper
Mix gently so you don't bruise the herbs too much. Garnish with extra herbs and a squeeze of lemon juice, if you prefer