By Michael Jones, chef at the Cachagua General Store
Our great friend Rich Tanquay, the winemaker at Heller Estate, also grows organic tomatoes and watermelon on the bench above The Store. In September and October when the crop is in, we overflow with produce from our locals. We grow the basil. And the Meyer lemons.
1 quart heirloom tomatoes, cut in 1 inch cubes
1 quart heirloom watermelon, cut in 1 inch cubes
1 quart rough Cachagua or other country bread, cut in 1 inch cubes
2 Meyer lemons
8 ounces California Olive Ranch Arbequina EVOO
1/2 cup chopped Genovese Basil
1/2 cup chopped Opal Basil
Giant pinch ground cubeb pepper
Giant pinch Morton and Basset coarse ground black pepper
Generous sprinkle of Cyprus Black Lava Salt
- Cut the bread, if fresh, the night before and let dry in a large bowl.
- In the morning toss the bread with half the olive oil.
- Just before serving, combine the tomatoes, the basil, the watermelon and the bread and toss. Add the peppers and the remaining olive oil and squeeze the lemons over the mix. Toss.
- Display in a large bowl or platter. Sprinkle liberally with lava salt.