If you're looking for a super easy and fresh Mexican inspired side dish for the summer, this is it! This salad takes all of 5 minutes to prepare and toss together while tasting absolutely amazing with it's bright and bold flavors.
This dish actually reminds a bit of a greek antipasto salad, except that it's meatless and hints towards Mexican roots. There's queso fresco instead of feta, jalapeño in place of peperoncinni and the proud zing of some lime and cilantro added in there.
I like to make this salad a bit ahead of time, leaving it to marry with all of it's wonderful flavors in the fridge and omitting the queso fresco until I'm ready to serve. If you add the cheese in ahead of time and then let the salad sit, the kalamata olives may start to turn the white queso fresco purple - which is fine if you don't mind purple cheese.
Now, my salad wasn't spicy at all. I actually ended up with somewhat of a dud of a jalapeño. The heat of each jalapeño will very, so you will want to be mindful of that if you have any with tender taste-buds in your house as I do!
Mexican Summer Tomato Salad
Servings: 8 • Size: About 1/2 Cup • Calories: 215.6 • Fat: 18.2 g • Carb: 9.1 g • Fiber: 0.2 g • Protein: 3.7 g • Sugar: 1.4 g • Sodium: 871.8 mg
1/4 C. Pine Nuts
1 Jalapeño, Seeded & Minced
2 Garlic Cloves, Minced
3/4 Kalamata Olives, Sliced
3/4 C. Green Olives, Sliced
1 1/2 C. Cherry/Grape Tomatoes, Halved
1/4 C. Cilantro, Chopped
1/2 Tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/2 Lime, Juiced
4 Oz. Queso Fresco, Crumbled (Large Chunks)
Salt & Pepper to Taste
Place the pine nuts, jalapeño and garlic into a small pan and cook over medium heat just until the pine nuts are browning and the vegetables are becoming tender.
Just about a minute or two.
Transfer the pine nuts and cooked vegetables into a large bowl, and add in the rest of the ingredients - except for the queso fresco.
Carefully stir to combine slightly.
Finally add in the queso fresco.
You'll want to add the queso fresco last to keep the cheese in the larger chunks.
Serve right away and enjoy!