Strawberry and Sun Gold Tomato Salad with Honey-Lime Citronette
This recipe was inspired by one I savored many times while Dan Kluger was the chef at ABC Kitchen in Manhattan. The contrast between the crunchy cucumber, sweet delicate strawberries, and creamy goat cheese is just spectacular—straight up summer on a plate. Tarragon lends an unexpected, anise-like note, while the honey-sweetened line citronette brings everything together with a zippy, refreshing punch. The dressing is also versitle enough to be used on almost any salad, which is fortunate, because you'll want to make it again and again. For the best flavor, look for tiny Trister strawberries at the farmer's market. If you can't find them, regular strawberries will do. Just half or quarter them.
For the Citronette:
3 or 4 limes, 1 zested, all juiced to make 1/3 cup
1 tablespoon honey
1/4 cup fruity extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup grapeseed oil
Salt and freshly cracked pepper
For the Salad:
4 mini seedles cucumbers, cut into 1/2-inch rounds
12 ounces mini strawberries, trimmed
1 pint Sun Gold cherry tomatoes, halved
1/2 teaspoon finely diced serrano chile
1 small bunch fresh mint, chopped, a handful reserved for garnish
1 small bunch fresh tarragon, chopped, a handful reserved for garnish
1/3 cup crumbled soft goat cheese
Flaky sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, for serving
Makes 4-6 servings
For the Citronette:
In a small bowl, whisk together the lime zest, juice, and honey. Slowly whisk in the oils. Season with salt and pepper.
For for Salad:
Place cucumbers, strawberries, tomatoes, and chile in a large bowl. Lightly drizzle with about half of the dressing and toss to coat. Add additional dressing as needed. Sprinkle with the chopped herbs and toss to combine.
To serve, top with the cheese and sprinkle with the reserved herbs, flaky sea salt, and freshly cracked pepper.
Swoon Tip: Be sure to add the goat cheese at the very end so that it doesn't get mushy and muddle the salad's other colorful components. To keep the veggies from wilting, add the dressing and salt just before serving.
Photography by Johnny Miller
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Athena Calderone is a multidisciplinary creative whose work spans design and entertaining. Whether she is layering flavors in the kitchen, setting a bountiful table, or designing an entire room, Athena is renowned for her graceful yet juxtaposed pairings. Across her creative endeavors, she is fueled by her belief that beautiful food and thoughtful design brings people together and transforms little moments into lasting memories.
Deemed “the modern girl’s Martha Stewart” by the New York Times, she has written two books, Cook Beautiful (Abrams 2017) and Live Beautiful (Abrams 2020), which expand on her culinary and design content that she regularly publishes on Eyeswoon. Her cookbook, Cook Beautiful received the highest culinary honor – a James Beard Award for photography. Live Beautiful is both a showpiece of exquisite design, and a guide to creating a home that is thoughtfully put together. Before it even hit the shelves, Live Beautiful was ranked number one on Amazon’s prestigious bestseller list. Top international brands regularly invite Athena to lend her design eye and culinary talents to creative direction projects.
Athena has also recently launched a podcast, More Than One Thing, where she interviews multi-hyphenate talents whose creative interests have led them on a nonlinear career path. Through raw and honest conversations with dynamic creatives, it is revealed how each person navigated road blocks, pushed through uncertainties, and challenged themselves to explore a variety of professional endeavors.
She lives in Brooklyn with her husband, son, and puppy.
Portrait by Stephanie Stanley