Caprese salad is one of the simplest salads to make. Garden or heirloom tomatoes, mozzarella, olive oil, balsamic vinegar and fresh basil are the basic components. This salad has additional basil flavor from basil oil.
Caprese Salad with Basil Oil
Garden or Heirloom tomatoes (I used a mixture of yellow tomatoes and striped german tomatoes- 18 slices yellow tomatoes and 12 slices striped german tomatoes)
12 ounces sliced mozzarella cheese, torn into bite size pieces
Basil oil (recipe follows)
2-3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
12-15 Fresh basil leaves
Slice and place 1 layer of yellow tomatoes on the bottom of a platter. Scatter ⅓ of the torn mozzarella on top. Drizzle ⅓ basil oil and ⅓ balsamic vinegar over tomatoes using a spoon.
Slice and place a 2nd layer of striped german or red tomatoes over 1st yellow layer. Make the second layer of tomatoes slightly smaller than the first so the outer ring of yellow tomatoes is still visible. Scatter ⅓ mozzarella on top. Drizzle with ⅓ basil oil and ⅓ balsamic vinegar.
Slice and place 3rd layer of yellow tomatoes on top of red ones making a smaller circle so red tomatoes are still visible. Scatter remaining mozzarella on top. Drizzle with remaining basil oil and balsamic vinegar. Season salad lightly with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Decorate with basil leaves. Tip: Don’t be tempted to add balsamic vinegar to the basil oil. It will change the color of the oil. Makes 18 servings.
½ cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves
¼ cup olive oil
Blend basil and olive oil in a small blender (like Nutribullet) or mini food processor. Refrigerate any leftovers. Bring to room temperature before using. Keeps 5 days.