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An Envie Satisified: Simple Creole Tomato Salad Recipe

Creole Tomato Salad Recipe with Blue Cheese, Vidalia Onions, Capers and a White Balsamic Vinaigrette

In the Cajun culture that I grew up in and am still proudly a part of, we have a concept of craving that goes beyond just wanting something. It’s a “have to have.” It’s called an envie (roughly pronounced “on-vee”). As I said, this is more than a “want.” More than a longing. It’s a desire. It comes from deep within and hits strong. When it’s a true envie, you’ll feel like, “I have to have this.” And unlike a craving, it will not go away until satisfied. A craving can be a fleeting thing. But a true envie will not be satisfied unless you have that thing. That’s how you can tell the difference between an envie and a mere craving.

Creole Tomato Salad Recipe with Blue Cheese, Vidalia Onions, Capers and a White Balsamic Vinaigrette

Typically, but not always, an envie is for a food item. That’s how I’ve most commonly used it, and that’s how I always ever remember it used. This makes sense since the Cajun culture is so deeply entrenched around food and the pleasurable consumption of it. My most recent envie was for this particular version of a Creole tomato salad. It had to be this salad. It had to have blue cheese, onions, capers and a tangy vinaigrette on it. Jeremy chuckled and commented, “wow, that’s specific” when I told him what I wanted. But that’s another thing about an envie. It’s usually very specific: your momma’s gumbo, dad’s boiled crabs, Aunt Tea’s white beans and fried fish. I imagine that it’s probably the specificity that makes the envie such a strong and pulling thing.

Creole Tomato Salad Recipe with Blue Cheese, Vidalia Onions, Capers and a White Balsamic Vinaigrette

I could see my tomato salad so clear, could taste it so completely as I dreamed of it. I tortured myself and probably waited two weeks to fulfill my envie. Why? No clue. Well, actually, I meant to get everything for it about a week in but then realized I had forgotten the blue cheese. I fell to my knees in our kitchen. Okay, actually I was on my back writhing like a child. I’m dead serious – you can even ask Jeremy: true story. I just could not make my salad without the blue cheese. An essential part of the envie was the way the tomato, onion, and blue cheese, especially would mingle together and be delicious. So I waited another week. Reluctantly.

Creole Tomato Salad Recipe with Blue Cheese, Vidalia Onions, Capers and a White Balsamic Vinaigrette

But finally… finally, I made my salad. I devoured it with all the joy and pleasure in my body, mind and soul. I sated my envie. I was whole again.

What about you? Ever had an “envie”? Tell me about one of your strongest ones… I love to hear about that stuff! 🙂

Creole Tomato Salad Recipe with Blue Cheese, Vidalia Onions, Capers and a White Balsamic Vinaigrette

Yield: 2 salads

Simple Creole Tomato Salad Recipe

This simple Creole tomato salad recipe features ripe juicy tomatoes, Point Reyes blue cheese, capers, Vidalia onions and a tangy white balsamic vinaigrette.

Ingredients:

White Balsamic Vinaigrette:

  • 1/3 cup neutral oil (like safflower, olive or grape seed oil)
  • 3 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried dill
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper

The Salad: 

  • 2 medium-sized round tomatoes (preferably Creole), sliced to desired thickness
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup thinly sliced Vidalia onion
  • 2 tablespoons crumbled blue cheese (preferably Point Reyes)
  • 1 teaspoon capers
  • 2 tablespoons white balsamic vinaigrette (more to taste, if desired)

Method:

White Balsamic Vinaigrette:

  • Combine all ingredients in a squeeze bottle or a jar fitted with a lid.
  • Shake well to combine. Shake again before each use.
  • Properly store unused quantity in the refrigerator for up to six months.

The Salad: 

  • Fan each tomato’s slices on a separate plate. Sprinkle each fanned tomato base with half the kosher salt.
  • Next, top each fanned tomato base each half the Vidalia onion, blue cheese and capers.
  • Drizzle a tablespoon of dressing over each salad. Add more if desired.

Prep:15 min

Total:15 min

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