Summer is in full swing, and this means my CSA share is full of delicious tomatoes. So I'm especially happy to share this recipe from Mario Batali's Molto Gusto, one of our favorite July cookbooks. It's full of "go-to recipes for creating your own incredibly inviting “pro-planet” meals," says cooking columnist Sybil Pratt. Try for yourself!

Summer Caprese Salad

serves 6


10 ounces fresh mozzarella
1 ½ pounds assorted ripe tomatoes (choose a combination of colors, types, and size), such as Brandywine, purple Cherokee, cherry, pear, peach, and/or Green Zebra)
2 tablespoons champagne vinegar
6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 small bunch basil (Genovese, lemon, Thai, or fino verde), leaves removed, or about 1 cup mixed fresh basil leaves
Maldon or other flaky sea salt

With a sharp knife, cut the mozzarella into ½-inch-thick slices.  Transfer to a serving platter, reserving any milky liquid from the cheese in a small cup.

If using cherry or grape tomatoes, cut them half; reserve the juices.  Core the remaining tomatoes and slice them, reserving the juices.  Arrange the tomatoes on the cheese.

Whisk the vinegar, reserved tomato juices, any liquid from the mozzarella, and the olive oil together in a small bowl.

Tear the basil leaves over the salad.  Pour the vinaigrette over it, sprinkle with salt, and serve.

Recipe from Molto Gusto by Mario Batali is reprinted with permission, courtesy of Ecco, a division of HarperCollins, copyright 2010. Photo of the Caprese salad by Quentin Bacon.

comments powered by Disqus