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Friday, August 23, 2013

Caprese Salad for Two

I adore this salad and must include it because each year I have to wait 8 months before I eat it in celebration of the arrival of "good" tomatoes. Caprese and BLT's are the best things about summer. In 2006, Leon moved ahead to New Mexico while I stayed alone in Virginia to prepare the house for selling. We had a large group of healthy tomato plants. For two months, at least, I ate Caprese Salad, BLT or Greek Salad in rotation. Not once was I bored. A web search for this salad will bring up beautiful variations on serving, but what is necessary are vine ripened tomatoes and fresh basil. Here in USA, especially in rural towns, it isn't easy to find really good mozzarella but, in this case. the cheese is a foil for the flavors of tomato and basil.


Caprese Salad for Two

This is a throw together recipe there are really no measurements. Of course, this salad can be made for any number of diners.

About 3 handfuls of cherry tomatoes, halved (color varieties optional)
About 1 T extra virgin olive oil
a little fresh lemon juice (1 teas), optional
salt and pepper to taste
About 1 large handful mozzarella balls or cubes
1-2 handfuls of fresh basil leaves, torn, or cut into chiffonade

Place halved cherry tomatoes into a bowl. Drizzle with olive oil and generously sprinkle with salt and freshly ground black pepper. If necessary add a little more oil.  Let sit for 10 minutes while juices accumulate in the bowl. Stir in lemon juice and then stir in the cheese; let rest for 5 minutes. Stir in the basil leaves.

When I make this with tomato slices, I place them on a plate and drizzle with oil and top with salt and pepper. Letting it rest while the tomatoes release some liquid yields what I consider the best part of the salad--the salty, oily, juice. I don't let this go to waste (the juices are sopped up with bread after serving or somebody licks the plate). I place slices of cheese on top of the tomatoes and then basil leaves. You can drizzle more oil on the cheese or the basil. Be generous with your seasonings and with the basil. Eat as much of this salad as you can because November is just around the corner!


  1. Do you have something against November???

    1. The only thing I really don't like about November is that my tomato plants will be frozen and I won't be able to have this salad or a BLT. My basil will be frozen, too. That's my complaint. When does it freeze in your town?

  2. I liked the plate once - in a restaurant - dessert plate - hmmm still like me?

  3. Is it possible you have only licked a plate once in your life? I do it all the time!