New Year’s Eve 2011

Welcome to this new blog, started on that most disappointing of holidays — boozy, regretful, looking forward to little more than broken resolutions and promises. I’ve always tried to have sensible New Year’s resolutions. One year, I resolved to go to Raccoon State Park, mostly to see if there were really raccoons there. I didn’t manage to do that one. Two year’s ago, I resolved to drink more martinis and since I had two, thus doubling my martini intake from the previous year, I considered it a success.

I am pleased to report that I am resolution-free tonight. Except maybe I’ll resolve not to watch any election-season coverage, which as Mr. Michael S. aptly observed, is little more than sports for nerds, since we have about as much chance of affecting the outcome as I do the outcome of a Steelers game.

So tonight I’m making a resolution-free tomato salad, which seems like just the thing for my coughing, sniffling brood. I think the original inspiration for this was a Gourmet recipe, but I  couldn’t tell from the clipping.

Resolution-Free Wintry Tomato Salad (serves 4)

1 lb. fresh plum tomatoes

handful of fresh basil

fresh mozzarella cheese (a big ball o’, or a handful of smaller ones)

olive oil

balsamic vinegar

salt & pepper

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees fahrenheit. Cut the tomatoes into quarters length-wise. Toss with 1 T. olive oil, salt, and pepper. Put tomatoes skin-side down on a cookie sheet. Bake for 45 minutes, until lightly browned and nicely roasted (time will depend on juiciness of your sad winter plums). Let cool.

Toss the roasted tomatoes with chunks of the mozzarella, torn up basil, 2-3 T. olive oil and a couple of teaspoons of balsamic vinegar, or more to taste.

Happy new year!

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