Heirloom tomatoes with basil

Contributed by Preston Maring, MD

Heirloom tomatoes with basil
This week's recipe puts the essence of summer on your plate, but first, some feedback from a chef in Manhattan. Contrary to my recent advice regarding shaking the pan when searing scallops, don't shake the pan until they are the desired brown color. Also, cook potatoes for potato salad by starting them out in cold water that is brought to a boil. Plunging them into boiling water overcooks the outside before the inside is done. Trina Histon of KP's Care Management Institute's National Weight Management Initiative, informs me that grocery shopping at a farmers' market is worth 60 steps per minute of shopping. Just think of what you can do on your break. For a simple, delicious and easy to prepare salad that can be made in less than five minutes, try this week's offering. The tomatoes from Happy Boys Farm and the Johnstons are incredibly sweet. The complete recipe file, updated weekly, is at this link http://www.permanente.net/kaiser/pages/c5645-23597.html. If it won't open directly from your e-mail, copy and paste into the address bar of your web browser.


  • 4 large heirloom tomatoes of different colors, sliced thickly
  • 1 handful basil, cut into thin strips
  • 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar, aged for years … or not
  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • Small pieces of mozzarella or feta cheese optional


Arrange the tomatoes on a platter. Drizzle with balsamic vinegar and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Top with basil and cheese if desired.