Friday, February 15, 2013

Course #1: Tomato Stacks

There's this nice buffet restaurant in Korea called VIPS. Mexican food is hard to find in Korea but VIPS had actual Mexican(ish) rice and tortillas. That was my favorite thing there. But my second favorite thing was these tomato/mozzarella slices they served. Simple combo but so yummy. So I decided to make something similar for my Valentine meal's first course.
This recipe is from a cookbook a friend gifted me called Bride & Groom: First and Forever Cookbook. I'm in love with this book right now; definitely a great first cookbook for a newlywed.

Tomato Stacks
Makes 2


4 oz fresh mozzarella cheese
1/2 c balsamic vinegar
2 Roma tomatoes (about 4 oz each)
8 large fresh basil leaves
olive oil
kosher salt
freshly ground pepper

Pour vinegar, dash of salt and dash of pepper into a heavy-bottomed sauce pan and set on medium-high heat. Let it boil until it's reduced to about 1 tablespoon. (If after it cools it is too thick, mix in a couple more drops of vinegar.)
Slice cheese about 1/2-in thick and use a medium-sized biscuit cutter to create circles. Cut a small slice off of the bottom of each tomato so that they will sit flat. Then cut the rest of the tomato into three pieces.
To assemble, place the bottom tomato piece on your serving plate and drizzle with a few drops of olive oil. Then sprinkle generously with kosher salt and pepper. Top with two basil leaves. Add a slice of mozzarella and sprinkle that with salt and pepper as well. Repeat with each layer. Drizzle the reduced balsamic vinegar around the tomato stacks. Voila

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