Cooking during the summer brings a shudder to many a food enthusiast. Unless you really like to grill, cooking throughout the hot summer months makes the kitchen an unpleasant place to be – even using the stove, rather than the oven, heats up my entire apartment.
But this summer, we’re practicing frugality, & so I’ll be making as many meals as possible at home, rather than take the shortcut of grabbing something on the way home from work. I love playing in the kitchen, so it shouldn’t be too much of a problem, but I don’t want to make our non-air conditioned apartment unbearable. I already have some tried & true recipes, so I thought I’d share some with you!
To start, I thought I’d share my take on the ever popular tomato & basil salad.
What you’ll need:
A pint or so of cherry tomatoes, halved
1 red onion, chopped into small-ish pieces
12 ounces fresh mozzarella (if it’s not available, any other kind will work too)
1 bunch fresh basil, sliced into small-ish pieces
1. Toss the mozzarella, basil, onion, & tomatoes together in a big bowl.
2. Add balsamic & dressing to your personal taste! I would guess that I usually use about 2 tablespoons of balsamic, & 1/4 cup of oil, but it’s really & truly to your taste.
3. Let sit in fridge for several hours before serving! You can eat it as is, with some sort of yummy bread, or toss it over angel hair with a bit of garlic sauteed in olive oil.
– use local ingredients, or better yet, from your own garden!
– if fresh mozzarella isn’t available, try any sort of whole milk mozzarella. Yes, it has a higher fat content, but this dish deserves the best!
– this recipe is easily adjustable to whatever special food need you have – I’ve recently gone dairy-free, so when I make this over the summer, there’s no more mozzarella for me.
– also try the mozzarella-basil-tomato-onion combo on a thin pizza crust for a new twist! Bake it in the oven until the dough is crisp.