Thursday, August 14, 2014

Tomato Time is Caprese Salad Time

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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 mozzarellatomatoes 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.

 photo null_zpsc4ec9278.jpgCaprese Salad
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.