Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Antipasti di Insalata Caprese

Depending on which family or Italian owned the restaurant that I worked in, the styles of presenting a fine Caprese varied from kitchen to kitchen.  Some are plain simple perfection.  Others go too far from the traditional.  I added a few items to the plate, so I labeled this as an antipasti.  Caprese is sliced ripe plum tomato and sliced fresh mozzarella with virgin olive oil and oregano.  Nothing else!  The flavor is so nice and healthy. 
     We used to make our own fresh mozzarella from curd in a few Italian kitchens that I worked in.  Stretching fresh curds to form fresh mozzarella cheese was relaxing work in the afternoon.  Quality store bought fresh mozzarella is fine for this recipe.  Fresh oregano is good but most chefs prefer dried oregano for this dish.  No salt on fresh cheese ever!  No pepper either. 
     The salad has mixed lettuce, sliced onion, black olive, celery, carrot, virgin olive oil and a balsamic vinegar drizzle with a light sprinkle of sea salt and black pepper.  I placed a little bit of caponata on the plate too.  (The caponata recipe is posted in my blog too.)  Crostini that are brushed with olive oil and toasted are nice on this plate.  Only the small portion of salad and the caponata are the extra ingredients on this plate.  This is fine Italian antipasti!  Ciao Baby!  ...  Shawna

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