“I’m not a chef, I’m Italian”- David Rocco

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Insalata Caprese

Ciao a tutti!! When I’m in Italy, something that I really look forward to eating is a beautiful, fresh Insalata Caprese. It’s just a perfect meal. Milky and creamy mozzarella, plump, juicy tomatoes and sweet fragrant basil  with a drizzle of beautiful olive oil and sprinkle of salt. 

I certainly eat Insalata Caprese in America, but……they’re just not the same. The big thing for me…the tomatoes. Tomatoes in Italy are just amazing. The oil, air, water and sun in Italy all contribute to the extraordinary quality and taste of the tomatoes. When I was first in Ischia the summer of 2011, we brought some tomatoes at the local market, took them home and cut them in half and ate them with a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Bliss. We had never had such good tomatoes. Honestly, they just taste different then what we have back home.

So..one day while wandering around Rome, literally, just wandering and seeing what we found, we weren’t looking for anything specific, just taking in all of the beauty, we came across a little trattoria and decided to give it a try. I ordered the Insalata Caprese and did not regret it. Another key to making a fantastic insalata is getting REAL mozzarella. Not the kind packaged in the supermarket. You need to find a place that sells fresh, milky mozzarella.

I know this may sound like the most, simple, easiest recipe ever and it is…but that’s one of the reasons I love it so much. You’ll be amazed at how something so simple, can taste so incredible. Buon Appetito!!

Insalata Caprese

3 vine ripe tomatoes (cut into ¼ inch thick slices)
1 pound fresh mozzarella (cut into ¼ inch thick slices)
1 bunch fresh basil
Extra virgin olive oil (to drizzle)
Salt and Pepper

Layer alternating slices of tomatoes and mozzarella, adding some basil between. Drizzle the top of the salad with the olive oil and sprinkle with some salt and pepper (quanto basta!). Enjoy!!


  1. Hi Caroline,

    How beautiful! You make very good points about many of the tomatoes in the US (the supermarket type, or any that are out of season). But...while I have not tasted fresh Italian tomatoes, I have tasted heirloom tomatoes picked right from the farm, and they exquisite. This summer, if you have not yet tried heirlooms, I urge you to. I love them so much I even blogged about them: http://mcproco.wordpress.com/2011/09/07/as-good-as-it-gets/

    Enjoy, and thanks for the delicious post! M

  2. I have to agree with Marisa...tomatoes from the supermarkets here are just terrible. I hold out until my heirlooms produce. I did get a hold of a San Marzano (sp?) tomato plant last year from our farmers market and they were so sweet and good. I love tomatoes with just salt and pepper on them. Great post...you made me hungry for summertime!

  3. This looks so delicious. I love Italian Food, so I'm so looking forward to following your blog.
    Would love you to check mine out at http://www.memoriesbythemile.com/
    Wanda Ann @ Memories by the Mile