Recipe Corner: Drivin’ me caprese

Lily Kincaid, Reporter

It can be hard to find a dinner option that’s quick, simple and inexpensive. It’s even harder to plan a new and exciting meal within those parameters, but caprese ticks off all the boxes.

Caprese salads have three basic ingredients: tomatoes, mozzarella and basil. From there, it’s all about personalization. Grilled chicken or tofu can add a little bit of protein to this dish, and mixing in avocados, spinach and zucchini can round out the flavor nicely. It can easily be turned into a tasty sandwich with just a few extra ingredients. 

CAPRESE SALAD

Prep time: 10 minutes

Servings: 2

Ingredients

2 ripe tomatoes, sliced

½ pound mozzarella cheese, sliced

⅓ cup fresh basil leaves

Pinch of kosher salt

1 tablespoon of ground black pepper or to taste

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 ½ tablespoon balsamic glaze

Directions

Step one

On a large rimmed platter, layer tomatoes, mozzarella and basil leaves. Sprinkle with olive oil, balsamic glaze, salt and pepper.

Step two

Serve immediately. Pair with grilled chicken and a toasted baguette or enjoy the salad by itself.

 

CAPRESE SANDWICH

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 5 minutes

Total time: 15 minutes

Servings: 2

Ingredients

1 baguette, sliced in half and split down the middle

1 tablespoon balsamic glaze

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon basil pesto

½ pound mozzarella, sliced 

2 ripe tomatoes, sliced

Pinch of kosher salt

1 teaspoon of pepper or to taste

Directions

Step one

Preheat the oven to 350 F. Lay the baguette slices face up in a pan and bake for five minutes or until lightly browned. 

Step two

Evenly drizzle the olive oil and balsamic glaze over two of the pieces of bread. Spread the basil pesto on the other two slices of bread and sprinkle with pepper. Layer the mozzarella and tomatoes on top of the basil pesto and sprinkle with salt. Place the other half of the bread on top of the tomatoes. 

Step three

Serve immediately. This sandwich pairs great with a light soup, pub chips or a fruit salad. Experiment with additional toppings, like pickled red onions or arugula leaves, and different types of bread, like sourdough or focaccia. This sandwich can also be grilled in a pan or cooked in a panini press.