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Tomato and Melon Salad

This salad is fabulous and says summer like no other. The sweetness of the melon, ripe tomatoes, crisp cucumbers and red onion playing with flavor-packing herbs, a splash sherry vinegar and several glugs of good olive oil bring this summer salad together. Feel free to exchange cantaloupe for watermelon or vice versa and use whatever tomatoes look best--heirloom, zebra, cherry or pear. Red wine vinegar for sherry vinegar. Oregano instead of basil. Arugula for butter lettuce cups. Mix it up.
Course Salad
Cuisine Italian
Keyword melon, summer, tomato salad
Servings 4
Author The Cowgirl Gourmet adapted this recipe from the one found on SavorSA.com which originates from David Rocco's "Made in Italy" cookbook


  • 2-3 vine ripened tomatoes cut into chunks
  • 1 cucumber peeled, sliced and seeds removed
  • 1/2 cantaloupe peeled, seeds removed and diced or balled (or replace with watermelon cubes or balls)
  • 1/4 red onion diced
  • 1-2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons good extra virgin olive oil and a little for when serving
  • Kosher or sea salt to taste (a pinch)
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • Fresh basil to taste (optional)
  • 1 bunch arugula torn or Butter lettuce cups


  1. The key to the salad is to mix the chopped tomatoes, cucumber, cantaloupe, red onion with the sherry vinegar, olive oil, herbs and spices and let sit for 5 minutes so the flavors meld. Be careful not to overdo it with the basil or red wine vinegar. These are really just small complements to the tomatoes and melon.

  2. On a serving plate, sparingly lay out the peppery arugula or place a piece of Butter lettuce to serve as a "cup". Add the seasoned fruits and vegetables on top, drizzle with a little more olive oil, a grind of fresh black pepper and serve immediately.