(Italian Tomato-Mozzarella-Basil salad)
1/2 pound fresh mozzarella cheese, sliced 1/4-inch thick
2 large ripe
tomatoes, sliced 1/4-inch thick
1 cup fresh
salt and freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons drained capers (optional)
1/4 cup Olive oil
circular design around the side of a serving plate, alternate
fresh mozzarella slices on a large platter (or on individual
plates if you are doing individual portions) with sliced
tomatoes, overlapping for effect. Tear fresh basil leaves and
sprinkle liberally over the slices. Add salt and freshly ground
pepper to taste. Sprinkle capers over the top. Just before
serving, drizzle on some excellent extra-virgin olive oil.
Note: Insalata Caprese should never be allowed to sit in
oil for any length of time and become soggy. And no vinegar of
any kind goes on Insalata Caprese!
Greens with Pears and Walnuts
1/2 cup walnuts
(pecans, hazelnuts, etc. may be substituted)
2 firm pears
2 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon sugar
3 tablespoons white wine
1/4 cup unseasoned rice vinegar
3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1/2 cup walnut oil or extra-virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
salt and coarsely ground black pepper to taste
6 to 8 cups mixed baby salad greens
(washed and spun dry)
Goat Cheese Croutons (recipe below)
Preheat oven to 400°F. On a baking sheet, lightly toast nuts;
remove from oven and let cool. Peel and core the pears, then cut
into 1/2" dice. In a saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter.
Add the diced pears and sugar; saute, stirring frequently, until
the pears start to caramelize a bit, then add the white wine and
continue cooking until the pears are just glazed. Remove from
heat and let cool. In a small bowl or jar, whisk together the
rice vinegar, wine vinegar, walnut or olive oil, garlic, salt,
and pepper; set aside. Toss the greens with the dressing and
distribute among eight individual serving plates. Spoon the
caramelized pears and walnuts around the outside of the greens.
Place the warm Goat Cheese Croutons on the center of the
greens and serve immediately. Makes 8 servings.
Goat Cheese Croutons
1 pound medium-soft goat cheese logs
3 sheets frozen phyllo dough, thawed
2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil
Cut the goat cheese into eight 1/2-inch slices Cut the
thawed phyllo into long, thin strips (chiffonade): a pasta
machine cutter works well and makes uniform sizes. Wrap each
goat cheese round in a nest of phyllo strips (they should look
alot like shredded wheat). Place them on lightly oiled baking
sheet; set aside. When ready to use, preheat broiler. Brush the
phyllo/goat cheese rounds with olive oil. Place under broiler in
oven until lightly browned; turn them over and brown the other
side. Remove from oven and transfer to the individual salads
with a spatula.
Note: Use dental floss to slice the cheese logs cleanly.
The croutons may be refrigerated, covered, at this point for 1
2 large sweet potatoes or yams,
cut into 1" cubes
1 small red or white onion, diced fine
1 medium red pepper, diced
2 tablespoons cilantro, finely
2 tablespoons olive oil
Red Pepper Vinaigrette (recipe below)
Put sweet potatoes into bowl and toss with olive oil. Spread on
sheet pan and bake in preheated oven for 25 -30 minutes or until
tender and fragrant. Remove and allow to cool 20 minutes.
Combine remaining ingredients with Red Pepper Vinaigrette,
add sweet potatoes and serve.
Yield: 4 servings.
Red Pepper Vinaigrette
1 roasted red peppers, diced
1 cup water
3 tablespoons oil
3 tablespoons cider vinegar
2 teaspoons honey
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 garlic clove, chopped
fresh black pepper
Mix all ingredients, shaking well.
To submit your favorite recipes to be
included in the Garden of Friendship Recipe Book,
please email them to Barbiel
Background graphics made especially for the
Recipes Committee of the Garden of Friendship by Valatine