Absolutely Delicious Insalata Caprese

Caprese salad is one of the simplest and most delicious salads you could make. Like all simple dishes, the quality of the ingredients is key, so be sure to use the most flavorful tomatoes you can find, fresh mozzarella, and fragrant green basil for this recipe. This salad should only be made using local vine-ripened tomatoes that are red, juicy and flavorful but not overly soft, fragrant young basil and of course, good quality fresh, moist mozzarella. Never, ever use the dry, plastic-sheathed supermarket variety!  

Caprese Fresh Basil MozzarellaMozzarella, Basil and Tomato Caprese Salad


½ pound fresh mozzarella cheese sliced 1/4-inch thick*

2 large vine-ripened tomatoes, sliced 1/4-inch thick

1 cup fresh basil leaves

¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar (optional)

Coarse sea salt to taste

Freshly-ground cracked pepper to taste

Cut tomatoes and mozzarella into even slices. Layer them on a serving platter or four individual salad plates. Cut basil leaves into thin ribbons and sprinkle them over the salad. Drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar and sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.

Served with a good quality fresh bread and a glass chilled white wine, this makes an excellent lunch or an ideal first course, especially for summer.  Buon appetito!

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One Response to Absolutely Delicious Insalata Caprese

  1. i love it. That is a clean basic recipe for one of my favorite foods.
    Insalata Caprese is about the most instantaneous elegance one can put on a dinner table

    i apologize for being a cheese snob, when I tweeted you that it’s not really Insalata Caprese, unless it is made with mozzarella di bufala (buffalo milk mozzarella), but I grew up on a Swiss Italian dairy in California, where I’d heard that, from my parents and grandparents, all my life yet never understood the truth of it until I moved to Europe. The difference is not just for food snobs with their taste-buds in their brains — it is a palpable distinction.

    To share the passion for this amazing cheese, with your readers, it might be interesting to cover:
    “Go Ahead, Milk My Day — Buffalo mozzarella from Italy is perhaps the most difficult cheese to replicate. Is the Silicon Valley consultant-turned-dairy-farmer named Craig Ramini in over his head?” By SAM ANDERSON — New York Times Published October 11, 2012

    Anyway, thank you for your great work.

    Joey Tranchina
    Sète, France

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