It’s high season for perfect, organic tomatoes and fresh basil—so what are you waiting for? Make this caprese salad tonight.
My mother-in-law brought me some awesome organic tomatoes the other day, and my garden basil was blooming in fabulous style (it’s really the only thing I seem to be able to grow successfully), and I’d recently gotten a bottle of luscious Nonna Pia’s Balsamic Reduction from my trip to Whistler... so what else could I do but buy some fresh mozzarella and make a caprese salad? (OK, there are other options, like these 20 ways to savor tomatoes, but still.)
These fresh ingredients are at their peak right now, so don’t wait. The tomatoes and basil are the real stars of the show, so if you don’t have balsamic reduction, don’t worry; you can make your own simply by gently boiling balsamic vinegar until it’s syrupy, or use any ol' balsamic vinaigrette, or even just an excellent, fruity olive oil.
It’s terrific by itself as a side salad, with burgers or steak, or eaten as an afternoon snack.
Here’s how to make it:
1. Slice 2-3 organic tomatoes. (I like them about 1/4- to 1/2-inch thick.)
2. Alternate tomato slices on a plate with similarly thick slices of fresh mozzarella.
3. Sprinkle with torn or whole fresh basil leaves.
4. Drizzle lightly with balsamic reduction or vinaigrette and/or a nice olive oil.
5. Then—and this is important—sprinkle with a few pinches of really good salt (I like Himalayan Pink Salt). Serve immediately.