Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Caprese Appetizer

One thing I love about Summer is the easy access to fresh ingredients. I love being able to walk out into my garden and gather up the ingredients to use in a recipe. This recipe is perfect for just that, especially if you love tomatoes, basil and cheese! I hope you love it as much as I do!

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The first step to this scrumptious little bite of heaven is to make an easy pesto, which is one of my absolute favorite things to make in bulk and freeze in the summer. Here’s how I do it…

Ingredients:

3 cloves of garlic

1/4 Cup of roasted, salted almonds or pine nuts

1 1/2 Cups of fresh basil leaves, stems removed

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2 ounces of fresh parmesan  cheese, cubed

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1/2 Cup to 1 Cup of olive oil

salt to taste

So, this is so simple it’s astounding. Just put all of the above ingredients in a food processor or blender and then go crazy.

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Once you process it for a few seconds, check the consistency and if it’s a little thick, add more olive oil. Once it’s all done it should look like this..

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Presto..Pesto.

Sorry, I couldn’t help myself there.

I know what you’re thinking, ..what do you do with Pesto? You can use it as a sauce for pasta, add more olive oil and use it as a salad dressing, put it on sandwiches, use it as a marinade…really the possibilities are endless.

This is great to make in a big batch when the basil is going crazy. Just blend it all up and put it into some air tight, freezer safe containers and cover with a good amount of olive oil so it doesn’t turn brown. Pop the lid on and your good until next year.

But that is not what we will do with this little container of goodness today! So, go grab a loaf of French baguette.

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Cut this guy up into pieces that are about 1/2 inch thick.

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Place them on a cookie sheet and spread with the pesto.

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Toast in the oven until they just start to turn brown around the edges. Watch closely because this doesn’t take long! I use the toast setting on my oven, but you can also use the low broil setting.

Once they are toasted, take a few Roma tomatoes..about 6 medium size..and cut into 1/4 inch slices.

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Stack the tomatoes on the toast and then cut up two packages of fresh mozzarella into about 1/4 inch pieces.

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Place the cheese on top of the tomatoes and pop back in the oven for just a few minutes until the cheese is all nice and melted. The last little touch is to take a small basil leaf and place it on top of the hot cheese and voila..

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Easy Caprese Appetizers that are so good your friends will go crazy. Every time I take these little guys anywhere they vanish almost immediately. I’m not joking.

You can drizzle just a touch of olive oil over them before serving if you would like, but that is really up to you.

I hope you try these yummy treats and I hope you go and make pesto, your life will never be the same!

Happy Tuesday.

love,

Val

p.s. If you don’t have basil, just steal some from your neighbor.  …just kidding. Kind of.

2 comments:

  1. You may see me in your garden "borrowing" some basil!!!! This recipe looks and sounds so YUMMY!

    ReplyDelete