Ensalada Chilena was introduced to me back when I was in college.
I was taking Speech and we were all required to do a “how to” presentation. Honestly, I don’t remember what I did or what anyone else did EXCEPT one. One of my classmates was a culinary student (why I didn’t go to school for culinary will always be on my mind) and he originally lived in Chile. He showed us how to make this simple and traditional salad that was specifically eaten on hot days to cool the body down.
This salad was so good. We all received samples and I thought it had a wonderfully savory flavor with juicy tomatoes and the sharp bite of the onions. Ensalada Chilena would go well with a variety of meats and is also perfectly wonderful by itself.
I’ve only made this a couple of times since then and I don’t know why. It’s really simple to put together and is full of flavor. I made myself a written note to make this salad on some of our scorching hot days this summer.
The one part of this recipe you have to pay attention to, is “feathering” the onion. You will want to cut an onion in half, so that your knife spilts the root end in half. Remove the root end and slice from top to bottom, very thin pieces to create a feathered look for your onion.
The tomatoes will also be cut length wise, in thin, delicate slices. Mix your onion and tomato together gently, followed by your lime juice, olive oil, cilantro, and salt. I personally enjoy this dish chilled, but don’t let it sit for too long or the tomatoes will lose their texture.
Have you made ensalada chilena before? What did you think? Let me know in the comments below!Print
A traditional Chilean salad of tomatoes and onions to help cool the body down on a hot day.
2 heirloom tomatoes
½ white onion
Juice of one lime
2 TB olive oil
2 TB cilantro, minced
Pinch of salt
Take your white onion and slice in half from root to top. Remove the root, and make vertical, thin slices to create a “feathered” look.
As with the onion, slice your tomato vertically in thin, delicate slices.
Combine the onion and tomato gently in a bowl and add your lime juice, olive oil, minced cilantro, and salt.
Serve chilled or at room temperature. Do not let this salad sit for too long or the tomatoes will lose their texture.