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Italian/French Tomato Salad

Ingredients for 4 salads:

 

- 6 medium tomatoes

- 1 Mozzarella cheese. One cheese is about 4 ounces (125g), but the exact amount isn't important.

- Handful fresh basil leaves

- Olive oil

- Salt and pepper

 

Optional

- 1 baget (a French loaf of bread)


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Preparation Time: 15 Minutes

Cooking Time: None

 

 

 

Recipe:

 

  • Cut the tomatoes into slices (about half a centimeter thick). Remove the cores from the slices.

  • Arrange the slices on a serving plate. The slices should be separate (in other words, not lying on top of each other.

  • Cut the cheese into slices the same thickness as the tomato slices. Put a cheese slice on top of each tomato slice. The cheese slices should be about half as big around as the tomato slices, so that when you lay the cheese on top of the tomato the tomato is about half-covered.

  • Place a basil leaf on top of each slice cheese. This gives you a tomato/cheese/basil leaf layer.

  • Drizzle olive oil over the top.

  • Add salt and pepper to taste

  • Place the plate on the table with a fork and spoon so that guests can help themselves.

 

As an optional extra, a nice addition is a baget (French break stick) cut into slices. Place the slices on a plate or in a bread basket and put on the table with the salad. The bread can be eaten with the salad and used to mop up the dressing afterwards.


Notes:

This is a very simple dish, but quite enjoyable, especially on a summer day. It's very simplicity means that the quality of the raw ingredients comes out (for good or bad), so particular attention should be given to getting fresh, ripe tomatoes and a high quality olive oil. The basil needs to be fresh.

This recipe is found frequently in both Italy and the French Mediterranean.

Mozzarella is traditionally made in Southern Italy from the milk of water buffalos (introduced into Italy from India in the 16th century), but elsewhere in the world it is made from cow's milk. If you can get hold of authentic buffalo milk Mozzarella from Italy, it will add extra taste. A number of speciality importers (including some on-line) offer this. If not, just use the Mozzarella available from your local store.

For similar recipes, click on Tomato Salad Recipes.

 
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