Back In The Saddle Again

Quite accidentally, Ma, you and I took the summer off from this blog! But as it’s almost the end of September (woa, how did that happen??) it’s time to get back into the swing of things, including this blog!

To start the fall right, I’m trying to put a little more thought into my lunches to make them filling, on the healthy-er side of things, and using fresh ingredients! So this morning I tried to recreate on of my favorite dishes from the fancy cafe at school, which is a tomato and mozzarella salad!

I started with heirloom cherry tomatoes which I got from my coworker’s farm share that she let me have this week since she was away at a conference.

photo 1(1)They smelled (and tasted) amazing!! Now, I know what you’re thinking: ‘Mel, you have never, ever liked tomatoes‘. Well, in June, I was in New Orleans for the a wedding when my whole opinions of tomatoes changed… We went to this amazing (and fancy) restaurant for the bachelorette party, Herbsaint, where I ordered burrata as my appetizer. Burrata is a cheese dish which is firm mozzarella cheese on the outside and cream and soft mozzarella cheese on the inside. And it was served with fresh juicy heirloom tomatoes. Well, I wasn’t about to be picky at one of the fanciest restaurants in New Orleans, so I had the tomatoes with the burrata and my whole world changed…

Annnyway, back on track. So I like (some) tomatoes now. So once you wash your heirlooms, it’s time to drain your mozzarella balls, or as I just learned from Google, bocconcini!

photo 2(1)photo 5Now, halve those heirlooms, trying to avoid the super firm ones, and then mix them in with the bocconcini. I have noticed that people tend to like a ratio of 4:3 for tomato to cheese, but being my father’s child and an overall decent human being, I find the more cheese the merrier, so my ratio was much closer to 3:2…

Heirloom tomato halves!

The color gradation from green to yellow happened totally on accident in that picture, but dammmn those are some fiiiine tomatoes, am I right??

Okay, so once you mix your bocconici and tomatoes, sprinkle with salt, black pepper, Italian seasoning, 1 1/2 tbsp olive oil, and less than a teaspoon of balsamic vinegar. Seriously, I don’t know why I added balsamic because it was potent, and I don’t really like it. But it seemed like the right thing to do because that’s how you dress salads.

photo 1

Update: We just had a lunch meeting, and I’m glad I used the balsamic; it just needed time to settle.

I think this was a good, quick, and easy lunch, plus I have leftovers for tomorrow! Or tonight, depending on how lazy I’m feeling around dinner. Plus, I’m super into using all the Italian names for things since I just finished reading (and fell in love with) The Godfather. It was also a good start to get the blog back and rolling! I think I’m going to be a little more reasonable, though, and only post 2-3x a week, since this semester is going to be craaazy! Maybe we’ll eventually work out a schedule… Although I can already tell you I’ll be posting Wednesday night/Thursday morning because I’ve got plans for one fine looking spaghetti squash…


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