Tomato Season

First Big Tomato!“There’s only two things that money can’t buy – true, true love and homegrown tomatoes.” – from Kevin West’s Saving the Season, a cook’s guide to home canning, pickling, and preserving

We picked the first giant, juicy yellow tomato from our garden last night and sliced it into a caprese salad while it was still warm from the sun.  My daughter remarked, “Don’t you love the way your hands smell when you’ve just picked a tomato?” “One of life’s great pleasures,” I replied.

This is barely a recipe it’s so simple!  When ingredients are this fresh, almost nothing needs to be done.  Here, the tomato’s sweet acidity is balanced by creamy fresh mozzarella then finished with fragrant, spicy, basil and a drizzle of best quality extra virgin olive oil.

Caprese Salad

serves two

  • two large, ripe homegrown or farmers’ market tomatoes, sliced to desired thickness
  • 1/2 pound fresh mozzarella, sliced to same thickness as tomatoes
  • washed and dried leaves from 2 stems of basil, sliced into thin ribbons*
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  1. Divide tomatoes and mozzarella between two plates, drizzle each with a tablespoon of olive oil, top with basil.  Sprinkle liberally with kosher or sea salt and freshly ground pepper.

*Chiffonading basil: Stack several basil leaves on top of one another and roll lengthwise into a cigar.  Slice across the roll to create thin ribbons.

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