It's that time of year for fresh garden tomatoes! This recipe offers a quick, attractive salad or appetizer. Caprese (salad style of Capri) is a simple mozzarella, tomatoes and basil combination which is then seasoned with salt and olive oil.
In Italy it's usually served as an antipasto (starter), not a contorno (side dish). For the two of us, I slice one large tomato and arrange in a layered circle on a salad plate.
Next I sprinkle with small balls or cubes of mozzarella, and shredded basil. Then I drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar and season with salt and pepper. I'm done in under 5 minutes!
This recipe serves more than two and would be attractive for entertaining guests and/or making a nice display on a buffet table. Some recipes call for a balsamic vinegar reduction (boiling to reduce it to a syrup), but I just drizzle the vinegar, as is.
3 medium to large tomatoes, 1/4-inch thick slices
1 pound fresh mozzarella, 1/4-inch thick slices
20 to 30 leaves of fresh basil
olive oil, for drizzling
salt and pepper
can also drizzle with balsamic vinegar or reduced balsamic vinegar (optional)
On a large shallow platter, alternate layers of sliced tomatoes and mozzarella, adding a basil leaf between each. Or arrange on individual salad plates.
Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper to taste. Serves 6 to 8.
Estimated cost: $4.00 or less.