While the chefs are fun to watch, the real attraction is the food. My menus change according to the season and client preferences. In other words, each cook session looks a little different. If you were to peer into our windows this week, you’d find us making my Roasted Heirloom Tomato Caprese Salad (recipe below)—and creating summer meals with these honest ingredients:
- Heirloom Tomatoes: Fresh, colorful, and full of flavor, these special tomatoes are around for a limited time, so enjoy while you can.
- Crispy Cabbages: Often overlooked, cabbage is a versatile ingredient you can make into all sorts of sides. Right now, I’m shredding them for homemade summer slaws.
- Cherry Tomatoes: These little gems are bursting with juiciness. Toss them into green salads, slice them up for grain bowls, or just pop them into your mouth.
- Local Strawberries: There’s nothing like eating strawberries from your own backyard (or neighborhood farmers market). They’re perfect for snacking or adding to morning oats and smoothies.
- Zucchini & Yellow Squash: If you’re gluten-free (or just want to get more veggies in your diet), try zucchini noodles tossed in pesto or coconut curry sauce. I also love to roast or sauté chunks with a handful of fresh herbs.
- Green Bell Peppers: Ideal for stuffing, roasting, and adding to Creole dishes, they lend a sophisticated crunch to every bite. On their own, they make a refreshing snack.
- Sweet Onions: Grilled or roasted, these onions are an extra special treat during the summer months. Enjoy alone or on top of grass-fed burgers.
- Corn: We love to roast fresh corn on the cob and send it to clients smeared with herb butter. It’s a great vacation dinner idea. Before you leave, simply wrap the smothered corn in foil, pack it up, and pop it in the oven when it’s time to eat.
Now, on to the recipe... This salad pairs heirloom tomatoes with fresh mozzarella cheese (and lots of herbs) to create a dish reminiscent of a café in Capri.
Roasted Heirloom Tomato Caprese Salad
2 lbs. heirloom tomatoes, cut into wedges
¼ cup olive oil
2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
Freshly ground pepper
8 oz. fresh mozzarella, cut into small cubes (or marinated tofu to keep it vegan)
Fresh basil, optional
- Preheat the oven to 350° F. In a large bowl, combine the first 7 ingredients. Transfer to a baking sheet. Arrange the seasoned tomatoes in a single layer (use two sheets if necessary.)
- Place in the oven for 10-15 minutes. Remove and cool.
- Mix in the mozzarella. The cheese will stay nice and firm if the tomatoes are completely cooled. Garnish with fresh basil if desired.
Photo courtesy of Dreamstime.com