LuAnn's Marinated Tomato-Olive Salad, ala Roma's Pizza

The flavors in the salad are reminiscent of Roma's pizza. Roma’s Pizzeria and Italian Restaurant was located in our small university town for some 50 years. We thought Roma’s made the BEST pizza this side of Italy. (And yes, I have eaten pizza in Rome, Italy)! Their Tomato-Olive Pizza was one of our FAVORITE Sunday night take-out treats. For me, this salad is BETTER than pizza because it combines virtually all the indescribably wonderful flavors with only a fraction of the calories! I like to serve the salad with toasty pita wedges or thinly sliced French or Italian bread to soak up the flavorful marinade (think bruschetta)... mmmm!

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On my scale of 1 - 5, this salad rated a 5+! (Excuse me for raving, but all raves are well deserved)!

Ingredients

Salad

  • 2 (1 pint) boxes grape tomatoes, rinsed, drained, and halved crosswise
  • 1 (5.75-ounce) jar sliced Spanish salad olives (green olives with pimientos), drained
  • 1 (6-ounce) can pitted ripe olives, drained and sliced
  • 1/2 medium sweet onion, chopped (about 1/4 to 1/3 cup)
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic (2 cloves)
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon granulated (white) sugar
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts, dry toasted in a skillet over medium-high heat (optional)

Accompaniments (optional)

  • Pita wedges or thinly sliced French or Italian bread, toasted

Instructions

  1. One hour before serving, in a large bowl, combine the halved grape tomatoes, drained sliced Spanish and black olives, chopped onion, and minced garlic.
  2. Drizzle the olive oil and vinegar over the tomato mixture. Sprinkle with dried oregano, and basil, then toss lightly to until well mixed. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  3. For best flavor, cover and allow to stand at room temperature for one hour before serving.
  4. Just before serving, toss in the toasted pine nuts, if desired.

Yield: about 12 servings

Recipe by LuAnn Bermeo, author of Amazing Meals I and II, a two-volume collection of family-approved, plant-based recipes; loosely based on Allrecipe’s Cherry Tomato Salad.



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