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Insalata Caprese (Italian salad)

INSALATA CAPRESE

4 Large fresh tomatoes, unpeeled, sliced 1/4″ thick
16 oz. Fresh mozzarella cheese, *sliced 1/4″ thick
1/3 cup Packed whole leaf fresh basil
4 Tbl. Extra virgin olive oil
To taste Fine sea salt
To taste Freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup Imported olives
**Optional: Minced fresh garlic to taste

On a large platter, arrange tomato and mozzarella slices and basil leaves, alternating and overlapping each.  Drizzle salad with olive oil; sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Garnish with imported olives.

*A good boiled egg slicer works well for slicing balls of fresh mozzarella.

**When I make this, I mince 1-2 cloves (toes) of fresh garlic and allow it to marinate in the olive oil while slicing the cheese and tomatoes, etc., then pour the flavored oil and garlic over the salad before adding the salt and pepper.

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