Tomatoes R back, and ain't that great!?

Faced with a counter full of ripe ones when I got back from a short trip last weekend, I used several in a big salad the other night, and ended up with something that vaguely approximated a Caesar without all the work.

A while before dinner, I cut three big, ripe tomatoes into cubes. I rubbed a clove of smashed garlic all over the bottom of a small bowl, then put in a little (1 tbsp) good olive oil and even less (1/2 tbsp) balsamic vinegar; turned in the tomatoes, added salt and pepper, and stirred.

Sliced very thin a half-dozen basil leaves and stirred them in.

Cubed about 4 ounces of fresh mozzarella and stirred it in.

Set aside to give the flavors time to blend while a nice juice formed.

Cut (or tear) enough washed romaine leaves to make a big salad for two; spin dry and place in a large salad bowl.

Slice a couple of fresh scallions into rings and mix them with the romaine.

Dump the tomatoes and their juices over the lettuce and mix well.

Sprinkle on a little grated Parmigiano.

Serve! (A few anchovies and some croutons would make it even more Caesar-like, and I consciously left out the egg. It was still a good approximation, though, and we scraped the bowl clean before letting it leave the table.)