We love to combine the elements of a summery Caprese salad into a compact, handheld recipe. Fresh mozzarella, sweet summer tomatoes, and a hint of basil from our Basil Olive Oil turn this classic side dish into a whole meal.
Fresh mozzarella and juicy, ripe tomatoes both have high moisture content, which can turn a delicious grilled cheese sandwich into a soggy mess. We need to remove as much of the moisture from the cheese and tomatoes as we can before assembling the sandwiches. This step may seem fussy, but you won't regret it! We promise.
Since there is tomato on the sandwich, you don't NEED tomato soup with this recipe. But if you're feeling ambitious, we recommend Ginger's Tomato Soup recipe, which is spiked with a hint of our 18 Year Aged Balsamic Vinegar, rounding out the true Caprese experience.
Makes 2 sandwiches
- 1 large, ripe tomato, cut into 1/4 inch slices
- 1 ball fresh mozzarella, about 8 oz (if you can find some that isn't packed in water, that is ideal), cut into 1/4 inch slices
- 4 slices rustic Italian Bread
- 3 tablespoons Basil Olive Oil
- optional: your favorite tomato soup
- Line a baking sheet with two layers of paper towels. Place the tomato and mozzarella slices on the paper towels. Sprinkle the tomato and mozzarella lightly with salt to help draw out moisture. Flip the slices over and sprinkle salt on the second side. Let sit while you continue preparing the recipe, for at least 10 minutes and up to 30.
- Heat a large, heavy-bottomed pan over medium heat on the stove. Use a pastry brush to spread a generous amount of Basil Olive Oil on both sides of the slices of bread. Place the slices of bread in the hot pan and toast one side of the bread until golden brown and crisp, about 4 to 5 minutes. Remove from the pan and set aside.
- Use a few sheets of paper towels to blot as much moisture from the surface of the mozzarella slices as you can. Arrange the cheese evenly on the crisp side of all 4 slices of bread. Place the bread back in the hot pan, cheese-side up, and cover the pan. Cook for about 3 to 4 minutes, until the bread is golden brown and crisp.
- While the cheese is melting in the pan, use a few sheets of paper towel to blot as much moisture from the surface of the tomato slices as you can.
- If the mozzarella has not melted yet, blot excess moisture with a paper towel and place the slices of bread under a broiler, checking every 60 seconds, until the cheese is melted. Once the cheese has melted, distribute the tomato slices evenly on two of the pieces of bread, then topped with the other two toasts to make a sandwich.
- Cut in half and serve with tomato soup, if using.