Lemon Verbena Basil Avocado and Tomatoes

It's supposed to hit the upper 90s later this week in my neck of the woods. I can already feel the miserable humidity shoving my hair our of balance. So for the rest of the week the oven will be off, the stove will remain idle, if I can help it, and any type of cooking will be left in the hands of Mr. Grillman, with the exception of salads.

Fresh herbs have been the gift of this hot weather and have made it possible for plenty of experimentation in the kitchen. The most intriguing herb in my garden this year is the perfumey and prolific lemon verbena. This herb has added delicate exotic lemongrass accents to our meals. Our most recent concoction was a sweet avocado salad that combined refreshing citrus juices, creamy and buttery avocados and pleasant herbal contrasts from beautiful and fragrant lemon verbena and basil. Perfect any day but especially welcome on those scorchers.

Lemon Verbena Basil Avocado and Tomatoes
Ingredients
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 avocado diced into cubes roughly the same size as tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon orange juice 
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon verbena leaves, sliced as thinly as possible
  • 1 tablespoon fresh basil leaves, sliced as thinly as possible
Method
Place the tomatoes and avocados in a medium-sized bowl. In a small bowl mix the rest of the ingredients. Pour the dressing over the tomatoes and avocados and gently fold, taking care not to mash the avocados. Allow the flavors to develop in the refrigerator for at least half an hour. Serve cold.

28 comments:

Belinda @zomppa said...

Guck. So hot. Too hot. LOVE this. I have a tomato and some avocado waiting for me...perfect combination!

Sam @ My Carolina Kitchen said...

Now that's hot for your area. Are you sure you aren't in south Florida? Your avocado salad sounds perfect to accompany grilled food. Very refreshing with the citrus flavors of the lime and orange juice.

The verbena leaf looks so pretty too!
Sam

Kay @ The Church Cook said...

This looks wonderful, Christine! Much like lemon grass, I just love the subtle but wonderfully fragrant lemon verbena! I will need to grow some here in Savannah. :) Big hug to my Alex!

From the Kitchen said...

We have much the same temperatures around here. I had the nerve to post a soup recipe today. Just crank down the ac and enjoy. Quite frankly, I can't get a plate of pate, cornichon and French bread out of my mind. Lovely salad.

Best,
Bonnie

T.W. Barritt at Culinary Types said...

I'll have to try lemon verbena. A delicious, refreshing, and cooling salad! I'm with you, the oven is off.

La Table De Nana said...

I happen to have everything! I am growing lemon Verbena for the first time and love touching the leaves..Thank you!

Fun and Fearless in Beantown said...

This looks so refreshing and perfect for a hot summer day!

glutenfreehappytummy.com said...

what a great dish! perfect for a hot summer day!

Pam said...

I added lemon verbena to my herb bed last year, and haven't figured out what to do with it yet. This is perfect!

tasteofbeirut said...

I can echo what you are saying; it is hot and humid here in Beirut now and the last thing I want is to turn on the gas oven! Perfect salad, we can get fantastic avocados here and of course lemon verbena grows in the garden as well! Thanks for the inspiration Christine!

Sandi @the WhistleStop Cafe said...

Delish!

lisa is cooking said...

I just brought home a lemon verbena plant, so this is perfect timing! Can't wait to add the leaves to a salad.

Megan said...

This looks like just the meal I'd want to eat tomorrow. Can't believe how hot it's going to be!

Ko said...

Looks very delicious! Perfect salad for hot day.

Emily said...

This looks like a fantastic recipe for warm weather. We hit 96 yesterday, and I'm trying hard to survive without air conditioning!

Emily said...

This looks like a fantastic recipe for warm weather. We hit 96 yesterday, and I'm trying hard to survive without air conditioning!

Sandi G said...

So colorful..beautifully done :)

bunkycooks said...

I'm with you on being miserable in the heat. The temps were around 100 degrees while we were on our trip the past few weeks. Blech. Way too toasty! I also a a huge fan of salads and grilled meats in the summer and lemon verbena is a wonderful herb to use in many dishes. Hope things cool off soon!!

tori said...

Wowza- that is steaming. Summer is yet to arrive in London. Today everyone got very excited because it hit 22 C. That being said, love, love, love this combination.

Jamie said...

And here we are struggling to find spring much less summer. Coolish and grayish. This is one wonderful salad and perfect for hot weather. Who would have thought to make a tomato avocado salad sweet? I love it...and it looks so incredibly creamy and luxurious.

Barbara said...

You've been hotter up there than we've been in Florida! :) You know it won't last.
I love avocados. This is such a fresh and pretty salad, Christine. Will look and see if I can find some lemon verbana. I'd forgotten all about it.

Lori Lynn said...

I really like this recipe. I have a lemon verbena growing in the garden but I usually use the leaves with roses for floral arrangements (smells so nice together). I need to use it in recipes!!
LL

Angie's Recipes said...

wow A wonderful salad! I love the colour and flavour combos in this salad. Outstanding!

Leah @ foodforthefresh said...

What a wonderful twist on the normal avocado and tomato concoctions I've seen! I also wanted to let you know that I nominated you for the "Versatile Blogger Award" because I really love your content - http://foodforthefresh.blogspot.com/2012/06/versatile-blogger-award.html

nancy at good food matters said...

Love the look of this salad---so so cooling. THe heat has only gotten more intense since you posted this one, which makes it all the more appealing. I have not used lemon verbena in cooking, and will have to expand my herb repertoire.

Inka said...

o perfect salad to my steak ;)))

Federica Simoni said...

ciao!grazie della visita!!!! complimenti deve essere buonissima!baci!

Mama's Gotta Bake said...

I love this salad. It's perfect for a summer BBQ. Gorgeous photos too!