The Caprese salad recipe is one of my favorite salads. Who would think that a simple little salad could be so flavorful and delicious? Having originated from the Island of Capri off the coast of Italy, it is said to represent the three colors of the Italian flag; red in the tomatoes, white in the mozzarella cheese and the green in the fresh basil. I also like fresh garlic, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper on mine.
The caprese salad recipe is great to serve as an appetizer salad, as a side salad to dinner or a larger version served with rolls for lunch. I even fix one as a pick- me -up between meals. This also works well as a snack before bed. Sometimes I will fix a large salad, set it on the table and the family will share it as a snack. Although some prefer to serve this salad with oil, I prefer it only with basmati vinegar which makes it one of the healthy salad recipes.
Like other recipes which require fresh produce, for the caprese salad recipe you will want the best and freshest ingredients possible. This is a great salad for the summer months when vine ripened tomatoes are so readily available; those are best for this salad. The fresh basil possible is needed for this salad; I have used dried basil (if I have to) but it is not the same. There is also a big difference in the mozzarella cheese. Some of it is real dry; the best kind is the soft fresh type.
CAPRESE SALAD RECIPE
Line the plate (small or large whichever you prefer) with shredded lettuce or baby salad greens.
Arrange sliced tomatoes, overlapping, on top of the greens. Slice fresh mozzarella cheese; Slightly overlap the tomatoes and overlap each slice of cheese.
Sprinkle vegetables and cheese lightly with garlic powder. Chop fresh basil and sprinkle over the vegetables and cheese. Drizzle over the top balsamic vinegar.
CAPRESE PITA RECIPE
In a bowl combine the cheese, romaine, garlic tomatoes and basil. Add vinegar and oil and toss together. Salt and pepper to taste. Cut pitas in half. (I like to warm slightly) Stuff each half of pita with the tomato and cheese mixture. This is great for a fast lunch.
ITALIAN TOMATO SALAD RECIPE
This is very closely related to the Caprese salad recipe but includes a few other ingredients; still very good.
Combine all ingredients in a bowl with salad dressing; toss to coat.
Season with salt and pepper if desired.
MEDITERRANEAN SALAD RECIPE
This recipe is similar to the caprese salad recipe but includes garbanzo beans and instead of the basil it has parsley and mint for the green.
Combine oil, lemon juice, vinegar, garlic, salt and pepper; mix well.
Add beans, onions, parsley, mint and cheese; mix lightly until coated.
Cut tops off tomatoes; set tops aside.
Spoon seeds out of tomatoes and pulp; save for another use like soup of stew.
Fill tomatoes with bean mixture and replace lid to serve.