Heirloom Tomato Salad, Pancetta, Sweet Corn and Watercress, Serves 8
1. To make the vinaigrette combine the vinegar and salt in a small bowl and whisk until the salt dissolves. Whisk in the oil and pepper. Reserve the vinaigrette at room temperature until ready to serve the salad.
2. Preheat the oven to 350˚. Place a Silpat® on large baking sheet tray. Arrange the pancetta
slices on the sheet tray and cover them with an additional Silpat® sandwiching the pancetta in between. The purpose of this technique is to help keep the pancetta chips flat. Alternatively two pieces of parchment paper may be used, but a second baking sheet tray will need to be placed on top to create more weight. Bake the pancetta chips in the oven until they are crispy, about 12 to 16 minutes. Pancetta is very similar to bacon in the way it cooks. Reserve at room temperature until ready to serve the salad.
3. Bring 1 gallon of water to a boil in a large saucepot and season the water with kosher salt
until you can taste the salt in the water. Cut the corn kernels from the cob. Prepare a large bowl of ice water and a small mesh strainer or colander that will fit inside of the bowl. Once the water comes to a boil, add the corn and cook for 15 seconds. Strain off the corn into the strainer and immediately place into the ice water to stop the cooking process. Remove the corn from the water and reserve.
4. To make the salad core the heirloom tomatoes and slice into ¼ inch thick slices. Arrange 3 to 5 tomato slices onto each plate. Season the tomatoes with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Whisk the vinaigrette to combine and spoon a tablespoon of vinaigrette onto each plate of tomatoes.
Combine the corn and watercress in a mixing bowl and add enough of the vinaigrette to coat the greens and corn. Toss the greens with a dash of sea salt and some freshly ground black pepper.
Place a pile of salad in the middle of the tomatoes and finish with a pancetta chip.
Equipment: Cutting board and knife, measuring cup, measuring spoons, small mixing bowl, whisk, 2 large baking sheet trays, 2 Silpats®, large stock pot, large mixing bowl, colander or strainer, medium mixing bowl and a pair of tongs.