Monday, August 29, 2011

Heirloom Tomato Napoleon with Parmesan Crisps & Herb Salad

A fresh heirloom tomato salad is a rainbow of flavours bursting with sweetness and complicating the gastronomic senses.

The cascade of colours in our salad was a combination of fruit from local growers we hold in high regard:
  • Roots and Shoots Farm (our latest CSA basket)
  • Bryson Farms (sourced at The Piggy Market in Westboro)
  • Vicki's Veggies (we planted one of her Yellow Perfection seedlings in June)
  • Fran, a garden enthusiast and friend from Manotick (our Sweet 100 seedling was gifted to us at Easter and lovingly christened Heinz)
I first made Fine Cooking's Heirloom Tomato Napoleon with Parmesan Crisps & Herb Salad in September 2008 when I read about it in their July 2008 issue.

[The 4 tomatoes on the left are from Bryson Farms. The 10 wee red marbles are my Sweet 100's. The 3 yellow tomatoes in the middle are Vicki's Veggies' Yellow Perfection also grown in our garden. The remaining 7 tomatoes on the right are from Roots and Shoots Farm.]

Heirloom Tomato Napoleon with Parmesan Crisps & Herb Salad
Serves 4

For the Parmesan crisps:
2-1/2 cups grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

For the vinaigrette:
1 small shallot, minced (about 1-1/2 tablespoons)
4 teaspoons Champagne vinegar
1 teaspoons Dijon mustard
Kosher or sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons. extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons grapeseed oil or canola oil

For the salad:
1 cup baby arugula leaves
1 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
1 cup fresh basil leaves, torn into bite-size pieces if large
1/2 cup fresh tarragon leaves
1/2 cup 1-inch-long fresh chive pieces
20 small nasturtium leaves (optional)
Kosher or sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Sixteen 1/3-inch-thick heirloom tomato slices, preferably of different colors, sizes, and shapes (2 to 3 lb.)
About 20 various heirloom cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered

The above is Fine Cooking's ingredient list. I made a few changes to the recipe:
  • Because I used a grater to prepare my cheese, I only baked the Parmigiano-Reggiano for 8 minutes on a parchment lined baking sheet.
  • I used only arugula for the greens and only enough to set a base on the plate.
  • I used chives as a garnish - both as 1-inch straws but also finely chopped.
  • I chose a different plating for the ingredients instead of the Napoleon formation. (see picture)
  • Of their oil suggestions, I used olive oil and grapeseed oil in the dressing.

Roots and Shoots Farm
1004 Manotick Station Road
Manotick, Ontario
Facebook: Roots and Shoots Farm
Twitter: RootsShootsFarm

Bryson Farms
R.R.1, 25 Stewart Road
Shawville, Quebec

The Piggy Market
400 Winston Avenue (in Westboro)
Ottawa, Ontario
Twitter: ThePiggyMarket

Vicki's Veggies
81 Morrison Pt Rd
Milford, Ontario
Facebook: Vicki's Veggies Farm
Twitter: VickisVeggies


  1. Fantastic! Can't wait to find time to try it!
    Cheers to your fine work and thorough blogging.
    Tim @ Vicki's Veggies

  2. Thanks for visiting the blog Tim. When we stopped in a Vicki's Veggies during the Great Canadian Cheese Festival, we totally fell in love with your place. So love what you do.


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