Properly made this salad is one of the simplest and most delicious dishes. It requires only the right ingredients and the right season. The season first. This is basically a summer dish from which follow the ingredients:
Vine-ripened tomatoes, not too ripe
Buffalo Mozzarella cheese*
Freshly ground black pepper*
Extra virgin olive oil*
*Available from Medifoods
It should be made with vine ripened tomatoes that are red, juicy and flavourful but not overly soft, and preferably unrefrigerated.
The next ingredient should be truly fragrant, a flavourful young basil: green basil grown in the heat and sun.
The next essential ingredient is mozzarella di bufala, a specialty of the Naples region but good fresh cow’s milk mozzarella (called fior di latte) does just as well. Finally you need genuine extra virgin olive oil.
Slice the mozzarella into discs of moderate thickness and alternate them on a platter (or on individual plates if you are a doing individual portions) with sliced discs of the ripe tomatoes, overlapping for effect.
Tear a good bunch of fresh, fragrant basil leaves and sprinkle over the slices or overlap with the cheese and tomatoes. Add salt and freshly ground pepper to taste.
Just before serving, drizzle on some extra virgin olive oil.
Insalata Caprese should never be allowed to sit in oil for any length of time and become soggy.