Insalata Caprese is a delicious Italian salad dish usually served as an antipasto (starter). It is believed to have originated from the island of Capri.
In order to have the best tasting insalata caprese you MUST find some fresh buffalo mozzarella (mozzarella di bufala) — either some that has been flown in from Naples or some that is made fresh by someone locally. It should be soft, almost with a jelly-like texture inside. It will also be expensive, but it’s worth it. Stay away from the cheap pre-packaged supermarket mozzarella if at all possible. I tried the cheap stuff, and it just doesn’t compare.
Also, don’t use any kind of cheap beefsteak style tomatoes. You want vine-ripened tomatoes. Additionally, buy the best extra virgin olive oil that you can afford.
- fresh balls of buffalo mozzarella (mozzarella di bufala)
- vine-ripened tomatoes
- fresh and fragrant large basil leaves
- fine sea salt & freshly ground black pepper
- extra virgin olive oil - the best you can afford.
- balsamic vinegar (optional)
Wash the tomatoes and basil with water. Pat dry the basil. Slice the tomatoes. Slice your buffalo mozzarella if it isn't pre-sliced. Place the buffalo mozzarella slices down on a serving dish, and top each slice with a slice of tomato.
Place a basil leaf on top of each tomato slice. If the basil leaf is too large, use your hands to tear off a piece to place on the tomato slice. Lightly drizzle some extra virgin olive oil over everything. Add a light sprinkle of fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper over everything. You may also add a drizzle of balsamic vinegar if you so choose to do so.
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