Aug 2, 2015

Simple Summer Flavors - Caprese Salad

A simple recipe to enjoy the fresh basil leaves of summer.

Full Name: Tomato Basil Mozzarella Caprese Salad:
Tomatoes and basil leaves

Serves 4-5 (as appetizer)
Basil, fresh leaves - 1/2 cup
Roma tomatoes - 2
Fresh Mozzarella cheese block - 50g
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Thyme or oregano flakes (optional), Salt - optional.

Pinch or snip the leaves from the basil stalks. Rinse the leaves if needed to remove any dust etc. Arrange leaves on plate or any flat surface.  I don't know if there is a convention to have the leaves facing greener side up or down - so I did both. Since I was a little ocd, I alternated them.

Ingredients: Basil leaves up and down and cheese, tomatoes and oil
Basil, Tomatoes, Mozzarella block, Olive oil
The only thing I did uniform was to have the stem end of the leaf point inward to the center of the circle. I don't think this stuff matters but if you are into symmetry then it's kinda cool.

The small leaves were kept protected inside like baby elephants are protected by a herd.

sliced cheese and sliced tomatoes
Sliced cheese on basil, tomatoes sliced and ready
Ok, back to food:

Slice the cheese into and lay it flat on the leaves. Slice the tomatoes, arrange them on top of the cheese slices.

Now, drizzle some olive oil and then dust with thyme powder (or "italian spices").
Chill for half hour, if needed during hot summer days to give it a nice cool touch when ready to be served as appetizers. Serve.

Triple decker caprese appetizers
Tomato slices arranged on cheese
Optional/Variations: You can play around with the order of stacking. Even if you do not have fresh basil leaves, you can do the cheese and tomato in any season and use pesto spread/paste on the cheese or use basil flakes. Other flavor herbs (rosemary, thyme, blasphemous cilantro ) etc can also be tried.

For extra flavor, you can throw a few walnuts or sunflower to make it crunchy


Ready to serve caprese after dusting with thyme powder

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