Fresh From Nancy's Garden

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"Janis’s" Ukulele Tomato and Cucumber Salad

My friend, Janis, always has the most fun and unusual “Girl’s Night” Parties but she truly outdid herself last night with a Ukulele party.

When her email said bring along a ukulele, I absolutely assumed a ukulele was optional. I mean, really, how many of my girlfriends own ukuleles? Well, as I learned last night–almost all of them. And can they ever play! 

I figured since I was “uke-less”, I could escape the embarrassment and humiliation, but no–Janis had an extra one just for me. I had flashbacks of 7th grade when I tried to learn guitar–a nightmare. Or worse, when I took Piano as an elective in college and told the teacher my parents were going to buy me a piano and she said, “Tell them to save their money!” 

Let’s just say Jake didn’t get his musical gene from me and as the girls were playing Leaving On A Jet Plane, Brown-Eyed Girl and Hallelujah, I ducked into the kitchen and tossed my Tomato Cucumber Salad. 

You don’t have to have a Ukulele Party to enjoy this salad, but if you can round up a few ukuleles, invite your friends over and have a good time–I know I did and I just might try to tackle that G chord again.

  • a bunch of different tomatoes–these were fresh from the garden
  • 2 cucumbers, peeled, halved, seeded and cut into slices
  • 1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 handful basil, sliced very thin
  • 1 cluster of basil for garnish 
  • red wine vinegar
  • olive oil
  • salt & pepper

I picked these right before I made the salad.

Peel the cukes, slice in half lengthwise and use a spoon to scrape out the seeds.

Cut into half-moon slices.

Thinly slice the red onion.

I love using my mandoline for this.

Put the tomato, cucumber and red onion in a large bowl. Drizzle just a little vinegar and olive oil over mixture and toss. Season with salt and pepper, taste and adjust dressing and seasoning. Gently mix in the basil. Garnish with a basil sprig and serve.

It’s a great salad with…or without…a ukulele chaser!

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