Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Recipe 1 - Not Your Grandmamma's Caprese

So the recipes that will appear in this blog may not be revolutionary, may not be the most rugged or the most classic, but they are guaranteed to be crowd pleasers and for the most part fun. I come from a line of great cooks (my mom still makes her wonderful pie crusts from scratch using lard, an art I have a hard time mastering, but have fun trying) and I don't claim to follow closely in their footsteps, but I do like to take twists on 'traditional' foods and make them my own. I'll also be featuring many of my friend's and family's highly requested dishes so you all can try them on your friends and family.
*Note: Much to my mother's dismay I rarely have exact measurements for some items, but I will do my best to put approximates for those who prefer an exact road map vs. turn left by the old white school across from the oak tree.*
Today's recipe hopefully will come in handy especially with the summer backyard parties. Caprese Skewer Appetizers 1 container of grape tomatoes, cut into half 1 package mozzarella (from the deli section), cut into cubes smaller than the grape tomato halves 10-15 fresh basil leaves, roll basil together and cut into small strips that look like ribbons 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar* 2 TBS olive oil* Place tomatoes, mozzarella and basil in a gallon size zip lock bag. Whisk together the vinegar and oil and add a pinch of salt (I use kosher because that is what all the people on food network do and it makes me feel cool) and pepper to taste. Pour the vinegar and oil mixture into the zip lock bag, seal and work around to coat. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight...the longer it marinates the better the flavors. Skewer the tomatoes and mozzarella on small tooth picks (I like bartending picks with decorative tops) in any arrangement you choose and arrange on a pretty plate before serving to your guests. Traveling Cowgirl Cooking Tip: Try out new recipes on your coworkers...they are always excited for free food and you will know if the recipes were a failure because there will be food left in the breakroom at the end of the day.

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