Mangia Mondays:: Caprese Salad

Hi friends and welcome to another episode of the kooky, crazy, wild Mangia Mondays, the blog hop I co-host with Delightfully Dowling’s spunky chef Kristin (along with new babe Charlotte as sous-chef!)
We’re so happy to have you join us each week to share recipes, restaurant reviews and kitchen tips!

While the fresh local veggies are still in abundance here in the Northeast, I’m taking advantage of the farmer’s market.  Is there anything so delicious as a ripe, juicy tomato, fresh mozzarella and basil, and a balsamic dressing for a hint of zesty sweetness?

So simple and fresh.  Oh how I love this time of year!!

Caprese Salad for 2
1 vine-ripened tomato
1/4 lb. fresh mozzarella ball
handful fresh basil leaves
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 clove garlic, minced
salt and pepper, to taste

Either slice tomatoes and mozzarella into similar sized slices and alternate on a plate, or just chop them both up into bite sized pieces.  Lay basil leaves on top of one another and slice into very thin strips (a chiffonade).  Sprinkle basil leaves over tomato and mozzarella (which apparently I forgot to do before I took a photo!)  Combine olive oil, balsamic vinegar, garlic, salt and pepper in a jar and shake vigorously.  Drizzle over tomatoes and mozzarella.  Mangia.

Easy Caprese!!

Now, a little side note about my basil.  Last year my basil went gangbusters all summer long and I made batch after batch of yummy homemade pesto with the harvest.

This year – same pot, same spot on my deck, and a complete failure – see how the pathetic plant barely grew and the leaves are yellow-green instead of vibrant, greeny green??

My parsley was pretty sad this year too, although the other herbs – rosemary, thyme and chives – thrived.  Whatsupwiththat???    Meanwhile our next door neighbor-friends have their basil in a pot on their deck, with the same sun exposure as mine, and theirs is like a basil jungle.  {Therefore I am forced to steal their basil in the middle of the night under the cloak of darkness.  Or when they’re eating dinner and I just wander onto their deck completely uninvited – yep – I’m that neighbor.}

Do you have any easy caprese go to recipes?  If so, Kristin and I would love for you to link up!  Post a Mangia Mondays button in your blog post or link back to Shine Your Light or Delightfully Dowling to participate – thanks so much.

Hope you have a great week ahead!