Monday, September 14, 2015

Heirloom Caprese Salad

     At Whole Foods, Heirloom Tomatoes are a late summer favorite!  This beautiful Heirloom Caprese Salad exudes freshness and literally melted in my mouth, each of the 4 servings are only 192 calories, 11.9g net carbs and 11.5g protein.  These funny shaped gems come in a rainbow of colors and are a special addition to a recipe or perfect to be savored on their own with a little sprinkle of salt.  When selecting Heirlooms it's important to note the very thing that makes them taste so great as well as makes them more fragile than most tomatoes.  Here are some quick tips for picking and handling these culinary crowd-pleasers:

1) Only buy enough for a few days!  Heirlooms ripen faster than modern commercial varieties.
2) Pick Heirlooms that are somewhat firm to the touch.  This is more important with the larger varieties but if you buy a soft Heirloom of any size, chances are it's overripe.
3) Avoid Tomatoes with open splits and cracks.  A Tomato with a large surface area where the stem was attached will likely have a hard area inside that is unusable.
4) Don't refrigerate!  One of the best characteristics of Heirlooms is their texture and like all Tomatoes, prolonged exposure to temperatures below 41 degrees will soften Tomatoes and make them mushy.
5) Keep recipes simple to allow the flavors to shine!  Pair with fresh Mozzarella and Balsamic Vinegar or with local Corn.

Ingredients for 4 servings~
2 Heirloom Tomatoes, sliced into 12 total slices
6oz fresh Mozzarella, sliced into 10 total slices
2 fresh Ears of Corn, cooked and sliced from Cob
4 slices Turkey Bacon, cooked and crumbled
1 slice Red Onion, diced
Fresh Basil Leaves
2 Tablespoons Balsamic Vinegar
Fresh Cracked Pepper

     Lay 2 rows of alternating Tomatoes and Mozzarella slices starting with Tomato slice.  Arrange Corn around perimeter of dish, and line inner circle with crumbled Bacon.  Sprinkle with diced Red Onion, Basil Leaves and Balsamic Vinegar.  Finish with a dash of Pepper.  Enjoy  :)

Disclaimer: I am a Whole Foods Market Blogger Ambassador and this post was inspired by their monthly themes and gift cards received to purchase ingredients for posts of my choosing. I am not compensated by Whole Foods Market for my blog posts and am free to post whatever I see fit to my own blog. 

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