Cherry Tomato Salad with Garlic; garden woes

I plant 16 tomato plants: 3 Romas used for tomato sauce in the winter, 11 various colors of medium to large tomatoes used for eating, and 2 cherry tomatoes used while I patiently wait for the rest.

It’s not that I don’t like cherry tomatoes… I do. I just prefer the larger ones. My neighbor, on the other hand, only plants cherry tomatoes.

What I like best about the cute little guys is that they are ready while their larger kin are still green.

They are also very handy for adding to salads of all sorts.

And they make a great salad on their own.

The garlic is key….

Click here to Pin Cherry Tomato Salad


Cherry Tomato Salad

I prefer to make this with cherry or grape tomatoes (from my garden) but any, fresh, vine-ripened tomato will work.  I make it on Sunday, we have some every night and I just add more tomatoes and basil to it all week as they ripen – starting fresh whenever we finish it all.

  • Author: Kate
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: 2 servings 1x
  • Category: Salad


  • 1/2 cup (3oz, 90gr) red cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • 1/2 cup (3oz, 90gr) yellow cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • 1 tbs fresh basil, snipped
  • 1 tbs fresh chives, snipped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tbs salad olive oil
  • 1/41/2 tsp salt – sea salt if you have it.


  • Put garlic and oil in a small serving bowl and let rest while you deal with the tomatoes.
  • When ready add the tomatoes and herbs to the garlic oil
  • Sprinkle with salt.
  • Stir gently.


This is good the day you make it but better the next day. If you are going to make this a ‘perpetual’ salad, lasting a few days, add more tomatoes, basil, and olive oil as needed. The garlic will keep imparting flavor.


  • Serving Size: 1/2 recipe
  • Calories: 141
  • Sugar: 2 g
  • Sodium: 295.3 mg
  • Fat: 14.2 g
  • Saturated Fat: 2 g
  • Trans Fat: 0 g
  • Carbohydrates: 4.5 g
  • Fiber: 1 g
  • Protein: 1 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg
Tomato Garlic Salad

Remember when my garden looked like this?

And I was complaining about not being able to see what was growing?

That was just a few weeks ago….

Will I ever learn to stop complaining? (That was rhetorical….. I know the truth.)

Now it looks like this:

Not only can I see what’s growing there is no longer any leaves in the center to protect the squash from sunscald.

It actually looks a little better in this photo than it does in real life…. It deteriorated rapidly after I took this.

Internet research tells me it has downy mildew. There is no cure.

There are things that can be done to slow it (according to Google) such as cut off all the affected leaves – which would be all of them; and spray with a baking soda / water solution.

I’ve cut off the worst leaves and sprayed everything.

I lay the blame for this problem squarely on the weather which, up until last weekend was wet / humid.

Supposedly sunshine will slow or stop the advance of the mildew.

We are in the middle of a heatwave with brilliant sunshine.

However, all that sun can damage the squash that are no longer protected by the leaves.

The conundrum: it’s August. Squash are picked in September and October. Pick early and hope they ripen? Wait to pick and risk losing them completely?

It’s supposed to be 35C (95F) tomorrow. I picked the squashes (17 of them) that were close to being ready and had absolutely nothing even close by to offer occasional shade. 3 already had evidence of sunscald….. One that likely will go in the compost tomorrow.

And how are the tomatoes doing, you ask?

I have cherry tomatoes now……

How do farmers deal with this????

6 thoughts on “Cherry Tomato Salad with Garlic; garden woes”

    • I used to love that…. now that I have garden diseases and have to spray everything I can no longer graze while I work. It all has to be washed.

  1. The only explanation I could give is that they’ve been farming, most of them anyway, for generations. Maybe they’ve developed a fatalistic attitude to it all? My tomato plants are getting taller and the flowers are getting bigger, but that’s all they’re doing. Like I said, I might have tomatoes by Christmas…

    The downy mildew is not good from a longterm standpoint. You’ll have to make sure you clear all of your garden out at the end of the season, every leaf and twig and treat it again. Once you have it, it’s hard to get rid of since it stays in the soil. It’s pretty similar to the powdery mildew I get on my peonies every year. It’s only August, but the leaves on my peonies are gray and crisp. I try every year to get rid of it but so far, I’ve had no luck. And I need to move them to a different flowerbed, but am afraid I’ll just end up moving the mildew with them :/

    Have you made a blistered sauce for pasta yet? I can’t remember. I saute a little garlic, onion and sometimes, chopped mushrooms, in olive oil until the onions are translucent. Then I throw in a bunch of cherry tomatoes and saute them until they start to blister. When they blister, I mash them with the wooden spoon I’m using to break them open but not so they disintegrate. Splash a little red wine in and let it cook down a couple minutes so it thickens. Makes a really light but really tasty sauce over pasta.

    • I think the same spray I use on the tomatoes works for downy mildew but more research will be needed. I get blight on the tomatoes if I don’t faithfully spray. It’s the same spray used for the grape vines lol
      The sauce sounds delicious…. Not enough of anything yet but I still have hopes. Usually the cherry tomatoes all ripen at once, overnight…..
      I have white cherry and a red one that is really big for a cherry tomato…. I think the seeds I buy are not always what they are meant to be lol. I buy from a small, local place and the seeds are all packed by hand into tiny bags, then a label taped on. It’s always a bit of a mystery but lends interest to the summer

  2. Rats rats rats about the powdery mildew!! Can you put a tarp over the squashes so that they will be protected from the sun?

    I LOVE cherry tomatoes. Especially because they’re the only ones that will grow in our garden, with only my black thumbs to take care of them. We have been halving them and making tea-sized delicious open-faced tomato sandwiches with them.

    But now that more cherry tomatoes are ripening at once, we’re going to have to try your salad.

    • I picked the squash that were most at risk – and hope for the rest.
      I love cherry tomatoes – until the big ones are ripe. They are handy to put in sandwiches. I know have about 100 sitting in a basket on my counter so I’m eating lots. They seem to ripen in waves.

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