Ripe heirloom tomatoes, creamy blue cheese, sweet + tangy sherry vinaigrette, and crispy fried shallots. This is the best heirloom tomato salad ever!
For the Fried Shallots
- 3 medium shallots, peeled, halved, and sliced lengthwise (not too thin)
- 1 cup buttermilk
- salt and pepper
- 3/4 cup all purpose flour
- 1/4 cup corn starch
- grapeseed or vegetable oil for frying
For the Salad
- 1 small shallot, finely minced
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
- flaky sea salt (such as Maldon or sell gris)
- freshly cracked black pepper
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 very large or 4 smaller heirloom tomatoes, cut into thick slices or wedges
- 4 ounces creamy blue cheese (recommended: Maytag)
- fresh basil, torn
- fried shallots
- Combine the shallots with buttermilk, salt, and pepper, then set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, corn starch, salt, and pepper. Fill a medium pot with oil about 1 inch up the sides, then place over medium-high heat.
- Test the oil by sprinkling a little bit of flour in it. The flour should immediately sizzle and start to brown, but not burn. If using a thermometer, it should read between 350-375 degrees.
- Drain the shallots, then working in batches, coat them in the flour mixture, then drop them into the hot oil. Move them around for a few minutes, flipping if necessary, until golden brown. Remove fried shallots with a spider or slotted spoon, then place on paper towels to drain.
- Whisk together minced shallots, honey, sherry vinegar, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Slowly whisk in olive oil until emulsified.
- Arrange tomatoes on a large platter, sprinkle with sea salt and pepper, then pour dressing over. Crumble blue cheese on top and sprinkle with basil. Shower with a mound of fried shallots and serve immediately.
- I recommend doubling or tripling fried shallots to use at a later time. You will not need to double the flour/corn starch mixture or buttermilk, only the actual shallots. Keep fried shallots in an airtight container with a paper towel to absorb moisture, at room temperature, for up to 5 days. Recrisp in a 300 degree oven for 10 minutes before serving.
Keywords: tomato salad, fried shallots, crispy shallots, blue cheese