How to make a summer tomato salad

Chef Aurélie Altemaire shows how to cool off this summer with a light and zesty summer tomato salad

“As we move in to summer I love the abundance of tomatoes that come into season and one of my favourite things to make is a gorgeous summer tomato salad. They are simple, quick and easy to prepare and are a great lighter dish for the warmer months. We make tomato salads at L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon in London, but I also love to prepare them for myself, family and friends when I am not working.

There are so many varieties to choose from, including green zebra, striped cherry and yellow tomatoes. I suggest that you experiment, as it’s nice to play around with the contrasts of flavours and colours. I love to use baby heirloom tomatoes as these are the more traditional varieties and have a much nicer flavour than some of the more modern ones.

This is how I make my summer tomato salad: First, get 500g of baby heirlooms and ten fresh basil leaves, then chop up half a shallot. For the dressing, add 4tbsp of extra-virgin olive oil, the juice of two limes and a pinch each of Maldon sea salt and black pepper. Gently mix the ingredients together and then, as a final touch you can grate the rinds of the limes before you juice them and mix these into your salad to make it even more fresh and zesty.”

Aurélie Altemaire is head chef of L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon in central London. Tel: 0207 010 8600,