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Tonight’s Dinner: Tomato and antipasto salad

Antipasto can be a delicious hors d’oeuvres platter when you’re having guests for dinner, but add some tomatoes and lettuce and it becomes a wonderful dinner salad the whole family can enjoy.

The last thing I want to do at the end of a hot day is turn on the stove and cook dinner — but the family still needs to eat and fend-for-yourself doesn’t really work with a two-year-old. So, it’s on these nights that I make a big dinner salad. What makes a salad a dinner salad you ask? I usually throw a protein or two in there and of course the portions are substantially larger. While I usually grill up some chicken or shrimp to add to my salads, there are times that I’m not in the mood for poultry and will throw in other proteins instead. I love ham, salami or even steak. So when Parents magazine suggested turning one of my favorite appetizer platters into a dinner salad, I jumped on board with both feet. The salad was delicious and super easy — two things that guarantee this salad will be on my dinner table again and again.

Tomato and antipasto salad


  • 1 pound ripe heirloom tomatoes, chopped
  • 4 tablespoons Italian dressing
  • 3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 head red leaf lettuce, rinsed and patted dry
  • 2 ounces Genoa salami, cut into ribbons
  • 2 ounces capicola, cut into ribbons
  • 1/4 pound fresh mozzarella, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 8 green or Kalamata olives, pitted and coarsley chopped


  1. In a large bowl, mix together the tomatoes, Italian dressing, garlic, salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate for one hour.
  2. Arrange the lettuce leaves on a large serving platter. Spoon the tomato mixture and any accumulated liquid over the lettuce. Scatter the salami, capicola, mozzarella and olives over the tomatoes. Serve immediately.

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