Tomato Salad with Crispy Shallots

SERVES: 6
3 large shallots (1/2 pound), sliced crosswise 1/4 inch thick and separated into rings, plus 1 small shallot, minced
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 cup canola oil
3-1/2 pounds assorted ripe tomatoes, sliced, or halved if cherry
Small basil leaves, for garnishing


In a small bowl, combine the minced shallot with the vinegar and let stand for at least 5 minutes. Whisk in the olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan, heat the canola oil until shimmering. Add half of the sliced shallots and cook over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until browned, about 5 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the shallots to paper towels to drain and season with salt. Repeat with the remaining sliced shallots.
Spread the tomatoes on a large platter, season with salt and pepper and drizzle with the vinaigrette. Scatter the fried shallots and basil leaves over the tomatoes and serve.