Even as our summer garden wilts in the current heat wave, we are enjoying the last fruits of our labor and savoring each ounce of it! One of my favorite ways we’ve been enjoying our late summer produce is in caprese salads. By itself or on a crostini (really toasty bread), this is a delicious treat made that much better by using home grown tomatoes and basil and a deliciously simple homemade balsamic vinaigrette.
3-4 ripe tomatoes of your choice
½ cup of chopped basil
4 oz. of mozzarella (fresh or low moisture, depending on preference)
Balsamic Vinaigrette Dressing
6 oz. extra virgin olive oil
2 oz. Balsamic vinegar
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
Salt & Pepper to taste
Pinch of dried oregano, basil, and/or Herbs de Provence (optional)
Slice tomatoes into thin rounds and slice mozzarella into equivalently sized pieces. Layer mozzarella and tomato slices in an alternating pattern. Sprinkle chopped basil evenly over the tomato and mozzarella, and drizzle balsamic vinaigrette over the salad.
Optionally, you can toast some slices of a nice Italian bread such as Puglisese, Focaccia, or Ciabatta, and serve the Caprese salad atop the toasted bread slices for an amazing homemade bruschetta. Be sure to drizzle with balsamic vinaigrette.