One of my favorite dishes to both make and eat in the summertime is caprese salad–with the the bright colors, fresh taste, and simplicity, what’s not to love?  While this dish is typically served with alternating slices of tomatoes and fresh mozzarella, I often will cut the tomatoes into bite-sized pieces and cube the mozzarella if I am taking it to a picnic, as I have found it is easier to transport and serve that way.  Regardless of presentation, it will taste great! 

Ingredients:

  • 6-8 of your favorite tomatoes–either red or in a variety of hues
  • 1 bunch of fresh basil
  • ~1 1/2 lbs of fresh mozzarella
  • ~1 tsp salt
  • ~1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • Balsamic vinaigrette or olive oil, to taste (I like this both dish with and without the vinaigrette/olive oil, so take it or leave it, according to your preferences)

Directions:

  1. After deciding whether to slice and layer on a platter -or- cube and toss in a bowl, prep the tomatoes and mozzarella cheese accordingly (note: If slicing the cheese, a 1/4″ slice works well).
  2. Top the tomatoes and cheese with the fresh basil–to do this, I simply wash and dry the leaves, stack them on top of one another, roll them up and cut the leaves into fine ribbons (the fancy term for this is chiffonade).  You can also just tear the basil leaves into smaller pieces and scatter them over the tomatoes and cheese.
  3. Sprinkle with salt, black pepper and the vinaigrette/oil (if using).  Serve and enjoy!  Note: if you will be prepping this ahead, cover and refrigerate after step 2 for up to a few hours , then do step three about an 30 minutes to 1 hour before serving.
Caprese Salad–A Summertime Favorite!
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