Last week my kids went back to school. My daughter was really psyched for her first day of seventh grade at the middle school. My son was really excited for his first day of first grade. I was super prepped, really organized (for the first time ever), and fairly confident that all would go well. Everyone really had a positive attitude and all was good. Then the first day of school came and it was pretty much a nightmare.
Turns out my son's first grade teacher isn't real good at anything, especially when it comes to following safety and health guidelines. For those of you that don't know, my son has severe food allergies and certain procedures are supposed to be followed at school. To sum things up, the teacher followed none of the procedures or rules. In fact, she violated every single one and then some. It made for a very frustrating and worrisome week. It was also quite surprising because I've always felt like child safety is one of the strong suits at this particular elementary school. I ended up having my first trip to the principal's office, but I think the issues are finely under control. I certainly hope so, anyway.
Prior to all the problems, I had hoped to enjoy lots of time in my kitchen while the kids were in school. However, all the issues caused so much concern I barely had time to slice a tomato and make a quick marinade. Lucky for me, that's pretty much all that was needed for a fresh and flavorful light meal.
This recipe was definitely a bright spot in my week. I was able to pick the tomatoes and herbs right from my own backyard. Making this dish was somewhat therapeutic for me. There's no way you can look at all those bright colors and fresh flavors and not be happy. I served the marinated mozzarella and fresh tomatoes over some good crusty bread. It was crazy delicious! I'd definitely recommend taking advantage of the fresh summer tomatoes and herbs right now. Choose this recipe, or a similar recipe, and you will absolutely brighten your day!
Marinated Buffalo Mozzarella with Tomato
Adapted from Plenty
by Yotam Ottolenghi
Serves 4 as a starter
grated zest of 1 lemon
15 basil leaves, shredded
2 teaspoons chopped oregano
2 teaspoons best-quality extra virgin olive oil, plus extra to finish
1 large garlic clove, minced
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, or to taste
salt and pepper
8-9 ounces buffalo mozzarella
2 ripe medium tomatoes
To make the marinade: Add the marinade ingredients to a small bowl. Mix thoroughly. Break the mozzarella roughly with your hands. Smear it with the marinade and set aside for 15 - 30 minutes.
To serve, cut the tomatoes into wedges and plate along with the marinated mozzarella. Drizzle with extra olive oil. Serve with good crusty bread.
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