By David Harbilas
I recently had dinner with a friend at Radici Restaurant in Portsmouth, New Hampshire.
The chef is a friend of mine, and he was kind enough to send us a simple tomato salad, but the server also mentioned a dish made with a tomato-caper-lemon salad, and though I didn’t try that dish I thought I would try it at home.
Here is what I imagine the dish to be like.
Rather than use actual lemon slices or segments, which some Italian recipes do make use of (and which I find to be just too tart), I decided to use both the zest and juice of the lemons. The basic idea is for the saltiness of the capers to off-set the sweetness of the tomatoes and for that, in turn, to be off-set by the acid of the lemon. This can easily be called a salsa, and if allowed to sit and macerate for a long enough time will resemble an uncooked sauce.
- 2 large chicken breasts
- 1 pint of cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1 tablespoon capers
- Zest of 1 lemon and juice of Â½ the lemon
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
- salt and pepper to taste
- olive oil for cooking
In a bowl, combine the cherry tomatoes with the lemon juice, parsley, capers, olive oil, and salt and pepper to taste. A word of caution: add the salt sparingly and readjust the seasoning as necessary, since capers are often very salty on their own. Chop the lemon zest as finely as possible–it should almost resemble a powder. Press all the liquid out of the lemon zest with paper towels. Add the lemon zest to the salad. Preheat a grill to high heat and brush the chicken breasts with olive oil and season each side with salt and pepper. Grill 4-5 minutes per side, or until the juices from the chicken run clear when pierced with a knife. Serve the chicken with the salad.