Tomato Salad with Roasted Garlic Dressing
This is one of my favorite ways to serve sliced ripe summertime tomatoes. Or, serve good tomatoes no matter when you can get them. For an even more beautiful plate, choose red, yellow, and sweet green tomatoes. Add cherry tomatoes for variety.
The dressing is fabulous, and full of roasted fresh garlic, but it is not so heavy to not let the tomatoes or the salad greens or grilled asparagus or whatever it is on the plate to be the star. It is also wonderful spooned alongside grilled chicken, mushrooms, a filet of beef, the list goes on.
For company, prep this recipe in steps. Do the dressing the day before, and you can roast the garlic the day before that!
TOMATO SALAD WITH ROASTED GARLIC DRESSING RECIPE:
Serves: 6 | Prep: 25 minutes | Bake: 45 minutes | Cool: 20 minutes | Chill: 30 minutes
Roasted Garlic Dressing:
1 head garlic
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/4 teaspoon hot sauce
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
6 to 8 Bibb lettuce leaves, rinsed and patted dry
3 to 4 large ripe tomatoes
1 tablespoon chopped parsley, if desired
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Make the Roasted Garlic Dressing: Cut 1/2 inch off the top of the head of garlic so garlic cloves are exposed. Place the garlic head on a square of aluminum foil and drizzle the olive oil over the top of the garlic. Pull the sides of the foil up around the garlic to encase it. Place the foil-wrapped garlic on the oven rack and bake the garlic until tender, about 45 minutes.
Remove the foil-wrapped garlic from the oven and open the foil so the garlic can cool enough to handle, about 20 minutes.
Holding the head of the garlic upside-down over a bowl, squeeze out the cloves of garlic. Using a fork, mash the garlic until smooth. Add the mayonnaise, buttermilk, Parmesan, lemon juice, Worcestershire, and hot sauce and whisk until smooth. Season the dressing with salt and pepper to taste. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and chill 30 minutes, or until time to serve.
Make the salad: Arrange the lettuce leaves on a serving platter. Peel and slice the tomatoes and arrange them on top of the lettuce. When ready to serve, drizzle the dressing over the tomatoes and garnish with parsley, if desired.
Leftovers? The dressing keeps, chilled, up to 5 days.