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I remember Expo 67 as a turning point. International cuisine entered the Montreal mainstream with a bang. Quiche Lorraine, Indian cuisine, Chinese food gravitated from Cantonese to Szechuan, Greek food became a staple, Lebanese food made inroads. Suddenly the world of exotic flavour exploded in our neck of the woods. The family of my youth embraced all the new and unusual treats.

Decades later when my life entered the blended family era, I tried to please everyone, in spite of their disparate food tastes. Smorgasbord became the norm. I carpeted the table with this, that and the other thing, hoping someone would like something. So different from how I grew up. No one catered to individual tastes in my childhood home. It was take it or leave it, and we basically all took it.

These days food sophistication levels have reached new and dizzying heights. Almost everyday I’m exposed to something new in the culinary arts. TV, internet, books, sharing food information has gone wild. Today’s recipe is a case in point. The simplest of foods, with a new and exciting cloak of desirability.

Tomatoes. So simple. So perfect. Who doesn’t like tomato salad?

Spiced Cherry Tomatoes Marinade Ingredients

  • 1 T brown sugar
  • 1/2 t kosher salt
  • 2 T white vinegar
  • 3 T extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 T each fresh ginger and fresh garlic, chopped
  • 1/2 t each mustard seed, ground pepper, cumin, turmeric, saffron threads
  • pinch of cayenne peppeCooking Garlic, Ginger and Spicesr                                                                                            


Combine sugar, salt and vinegar in a bowl until the sugar is dissolved. Heat oil in a heavy skillet until hot. Add ginger and garlic, sautéeing for 1 minute. Stir in all spices, then remove from heat and add to the vinegar mixture. Cool to room temperature.

Cooking with Love

Spiced Cherry Tomatoes Salad Ingredients

  • 1-2 jalapeño peppers, seeded and finely diced
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 2 T cilantro, chopped
  • 3 c cherry tomatoes, halved

Mix the 2/3 of the marinade and the salad ingredients 3-4 hours before serving. Serves 8 as an appetizer, or 4 as a salad.

Tomato recipe

Final notes:

  • My good friend Cheryl Levy is an excellent gourmet cook and one of the editors of the spectacular Maimonides fundraiser cookbook, called “Cooking With Love”. This recipe is one of the 150 amazing recipes compiled. Thanks you so much to Cheryl for allowing me to post recipes from this cookbook and for helping to guide my selections. This is a standout recipe from a standout cookbook. Bravo to all involved!
  • Thanks to my husband, Marvin, the smorgasbord days are long gone. We’re back to take it or leave it, and they are basically all taking it.
    Maimonides Cookbook Fundraiser