Friday, June 1, 2007

Caprese Salad with Balsamic Vinegar and Black Olives

This has got to be one of the best salads in the world. It tastes amazing, looks beautiful and is simple to make. What could be better than that? You can see why salad is one of the most popular salads in restaurants as an appetizer or as part of an antipasto plate.

Insalata Caprese (which means salad in the style of Capri) is a very simple dish made with sliced , plum tomatoes and basil, seasoned with salt, black pepper and olive oil. In this variation, we use small cherry tomatoes and add and black olives and there is no need to season with salt. This gives the dish a very colorful and festive look and adds a zing to an already wonderful meal.

Ingredients (this will make 4 small plates or 1 large plate)
  • 1 lb mozzarella cheese (ideally buffalo mozzarella, but you can use any)
  • 1 lb cherry tomatoes cut into quarters
  • 1 Bunch of Basil
  • Virgin Olive Oil
  • Balsamic Vinegar
  • Freshly Ground Black Pepper
  • 15 - 20 Pitted Black Olives

  1. Slice the mozzarella into slices about 1/4" thick
  2. Arrange the cheese and halved tomatoes on one large or four small appetizer plates
  3. Arrange basil leaves randomly between the cheese and tomatoes
  4. Drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar
  5. Place the black olives decoratively on the top
  6. Grind the black pepper over the salad
  7. Garnish with basil leaf
Serve immediately with fresh crusty bread, or pizza dough balls for mopping the oil and vinegar.

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