Happy Monday! Constance here and we are going to kick this week off with a little confession: I got married when I was 23, and I entered marriage with sub par cooking skills. Translation: I had absolutely no idea how to even scramble an egg, had never boiled pasta, and anything involving an oven……forget it.
Thankfully, my ever patient husband practically grew up in the kitchen and is a true culinary artist….in my opinion. He not only walked me through the basic of basics, he suffered through some of the worst concoctions ever made in order to give me some sort of confidence in my new quest. The poor guy once ate four servings of green beans that were so over salted that they tasted like they were scraped right off of the ocean floor, just to convince me it wasn’t a total fail (luckily, he also has a stomach of made of steel).
While this cooking journey of mine hasn’t been what I would call smooth sailing (it may or may not have been then cause of some occasional marital discord), it has truly been so. much. fun. Cooking (and of course eating!) has become one of our favorite things to do together, and consequently we’ve discovered a serious love for entertaining. We’ve always loved having people in our home, but my growing confidence in my ability to actually feed these people I love so dearly a decent meal has made entertaining much less stressful.
We’ve come up with a few dishes that involve my new found culinary skills, there are just some college go-to’s that I can’t let go of. Cue: the ever amazing an oh so simple Caprese Salad! I fell in love with this gem when I was studying abroad, and I just can’t quit it.
Seeing as my sweet husband has taught me so much since then combined with the fact that I’m rapidly approaching the big 3-0, I decided I could dress it up a bit and find a more grown up version to fall back on. This, friends, is my attempt. I hope you enjoy it as much as I have……everyday for the past 2 weeks. It’s perfect for lunch or for those summer night patio dinners!
Side note: does anyone else have a truly difficult time actually dicing heirlooms? They’re just too beautiful!
-8-10 heirloom tomatoes
-1 large handful of fresh basil
-12 oz. mozzarella
-1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
-1/2 cup, crisp light-bodied white wine
-2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
-2 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar
-fresh cracked pepper
-Using a tomato knife, cut tomatoes into medium sized wedges and place into a medium to large serving bowl.
-Tear fresh basil leaves into halves or thirds and sprinkle over tomatoes.
-Crumble mozzarella and sprinkle over tomatoes and basil.
-Combine balsamic vinegar, white wine, lemon juice, brown sugar and 1/4 teaspoon of freshly cracked pepper in a small saucepan and bring to a boil.
-Cook uncovered on high heat until the mixture thickens, about 3-4 minutes.
-Remove mixture from heat and let cool.
-Drizzle balsamic mixture over the tomatoes and add salt and pepper to taste.
-Serve and enjoy!