This is one of my favorite foods of all time and I especially love it in sandwich form, so this is a two-part blog. Caprese salad is of Italian origin and is absurdly simple to make. It’s just fresh tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, fresh basil, and a little dressing. It’s just a great dish for when tomatoes and basil are in season (great out of season too, who are we kidding?).
I can’t remember the first time I had a caprese salad. I just know that from that point on, I needed to make it at home every now and then. A couple of years after having my first taste of the salad, I tried my first sandwich in Boston at a pizza and sub shop in Center Plaza near government center. I think the place went out of business, but they used to have a great caprese and prosciutto sandwich with a balsamic dressing. The cured ham really makes a great salty addition to these fresh ingredients. The ham balances out the almost too fresh/light taste of the salad and mozzarella alone by giving it a heartier quality.
Below are my two recipes for a simple caprese salad and a caprese salad sandwich with prosciutto.
Total calories for just salad = 160
Total calories for salad with prosciutto = 280
Total calories per sandwich = 520
- 1 Portuguese roll (about 200 – 240 cal.)
Note: Make a couple of stacks of the ingredients and skip the bread for a more traditional caprese salad.
- 1.5 oz. fresh mozzarella (about 70 cal. per oz. or 105 cal. total)
- 3 thick slices of vine ripened tomato (about 20 cal.)
- 3 – 4 fresh basil leaves (about 5 cal.)
- 3 – 4 slices of prosciutto (about 30 cal. per slice or 120 cal.)
Note: You don’t have to have this sandwich with prosciutto, but it is highly recommended that you do.
- 1/2 or 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar (about 10 cal.)
- 1/2 teaspoon olive oil (about 20 cal.)
- Optional: Salt and/or pepper to taste, but I don’t use any myself since the prosciutto is pretty salty.
- Toaster oven / stove
- Teaspoon measurement
Directions for Just Caprese Salad:
- Slice three medium-thick tomato slices.
- Slice 3 pieces of fresh mozzarella (about 0.5 oz. each)
- Set aside 3 – 4 pieces of fresh basil.
- Lay down a piece of tomato on a plate.
- Stack a piece of basil on the tomato.
- Place a mozzarella slice on the tomato and basil.
- Repeat steps 4- 6 two more times and build the tower higher.
Note: You can also just overlap the ingredients and create an arc or spread them out across the width of a plate instead of making a tower.
- Drizzle 1/2 or 1 teaspoons of balsamic vinegar over the ingredients.
- Drizzle 1/2 teaspoon of olive oil over the ingredients and add salt or pepper to taste (I don’t add salt or pepper usually though).
- Serve cold and eat as a great pre-meal salad.
Serving Suggestion: Add a layer of prosciutto on top of each mozzarella layer for a heftier caprese salad.
Directions for Caprese Salad and Prosciutto Sandwich:
- Slice the Portuguese roll horizontally in half (or you can leave it hinged by not slicing all the way through).
- Place the roll into a toaster oven and toast for a few minutes until the inside is browned a bit.
- Take 3-4 slices of prosciutto and lay them on the bottom half of the bread by folding each piece over on itself making a kind of fluffy or wavy layer of meat.
- Slice three medium-thick tomato slices and lay them on the top half of the bread.
- Slice 3 pieces of fresh mozzarella (about 0.5 oz. each) and lay them on top of the tomatoes.
- Place 3 – 4 fresh basil leaves on top of the mozzarella (feel free to roughly rip up the leaves as well).
- Drizzle 1/2 or 1 teaspoons of balsamic vinegar over the basil and a little on the meat.
- Drizzle 1/2 teaspoon of olive oil over the vegetables and cheese.
- Add salt and pepper to taste (again, I don’t really add this, but that’s your call)
- Lastly, close the sandwich and enjoy!