Tomato, Cucumber, and Fresh Herb Salad

June 14, 2018
3 Ratings
Photo by Rocky Luten
  • Serves 4
Author Notes

This simple salad recipe was developed in partnership with Ajinomoto Co. Inc.

A colorful update to the Caprese—which typically pairs umami-rich tomatoes with mild, fresh mozzarella—this salad adds some crunch in the form of cucumbers and boosts the refreshment factor with fresh mint and parsley. Dressing-wise, you could go with any favorite vinaigrette, or even a simple drizzle of fruity olive oil and good vinegar; we prefer sherry vinegar as the acid because it provides a nice, earthy complexity with all that brightness. To really boost the savory flavors in this dish, you can try adding a pinch of MSG at the same stage you’d add salt and pepper, and using it much the same way (sprinkling to taste). If you can’t find Persian cucumbers, you can swap in an English cucumber (you may just want to cut the rounds in half).

We've partnered with Ajinomoto Co. Inc. to bring you a series of recipes, stories, and videos that celebrate the fifth taste: umami. This rich, savory essence can be played up in almost any dish by adding a dash of MSG, a seasoning that's pure umami flavor.


What You'll Need
  • For the salad:
  • 3-4 small Persian cucumbers
  • 2 heirloom tomatoes (preferably different colors)
  • 1 pint mixed color cherry tomatoes
  • 1 ball fresh mozzarella
  • 1 handful basil leaves
  • 1 handful flat-leaf parsley leaves
  • 1 handful mint
  • Salt, pepper, and MSG, to taste
  • For the dressing:
  • 1 shallot
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup sherry vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon honey
  • 1 handful basil, parsley, and mint, roughly chopped
  • 1 dash salt and pepper, to taste
  1. Make the dressing: Add the olive oil, sherry vinegar, lemon juice, shallot, herbs to a small bowl. Whisk until well combined. Season to taste with flaky salt and freshly ground pepper.
  2. Make the salad: Slice the cucumbers into rounds. Slice the heirloom tomatoes into wedges. Slice the cherry tomatoes in half. Slice or tear the mozzarella into bite-size chunks.
  3. Combine all salad ingredients in a bowl or on a serving platter. Add dressing and toss to combine. Top with scattered herbs and more salt & pepper to taste.

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