[Welcome to Stacie, who will be writing for us once a week from the west coast, bringing local tips and news from her LA kitchen.]
It's summer which means heirloom season is here, and I try to celebrate this seasonal blessing every day. This year I planted my own modest garden of the brandy vine and husky red variety that I bought at the ">Culver City farmer's market.
The bounty of my modest home garden makes me happy. One of my favorite ways to prepare these odd shaped gems is to keep them raw and keep it simple. They're juicy and sweet and colorful and have a genuine tomato taste that seems to have disappeared from our palettes the rest of year.
The favorite solution: ride my bike to my local wine and gourmet shop Mel and Rose, pick up some fresh, melt-in-your-mouth buffalo mozzarella and slice the cheese and the tomato. Add some basil ribbons, olive oil and a little salt.
You'll be smiling too, I promise.