When it’s hot outside and I have to be in a bathing suit on many occasions, I find myself wanting to eat better than normal. I should make a habit out of it, but I love French fries. And pizza. And bacon. What can I say? I eat like my kids. When I want to stray away from eating like a 12 year old, I love to make this super fresh summer dinner for 2, consisting of heirloom tomatoes (a seasonal fave), creamy burrata and a peppery arugula mix. It’s so good and so simple you’ll probably make it once a week!
I love Italian food. Meats and cheeses, tomatoes and fresh greens….. and the pasta and sauce and wine….. but I digress. This is a fresh summer meal with an Italian tilt. And it’s super simple, have I mentioned that?
Start off with the best fresh heirloom tomatoes you can find. Or just fresh tomatoes if you can’t find heirloom varietals. Farm stands or farmers markets are always my go to spot for these. But if you grow them yourself, even better! Slice them thick and arrange them on some paper towels to allow some of the juices to drain off. Sprinkle them with salt and pepper.
Next, prepare the greens! You could use fresh basil and make this a bit like caprese, but I like arugula. Arugula has a bit of a peppery bite and enhances the flavor of the prosciutto you can pair with all of this. Oh and it works well with a nice red wine, too! I mix the arugula with a teaspoon (or more to taste) of whole grain mustard and a tablespoon of olive oil. I use my hands to make sure it is all incorporated. This is the best and easiest salad “dressing” ever!
Remember that we eat with our eyes first. And this meal can be a feast for the eyes! It’s full of bright colors that make arranging it on a plate, or cheese board, a lot of fun. The freshness of the summer ingredients only enhances it all.
A French baguette is perfect for this assemblage. You can also use lager sliced Italian bread, but I like the smaller bites. Slice up that baguette and arrange it on the cheese board with the arugula mix, some prosciutto and the heirloom tomatoes. Also the burrata. Burrata is a creamy form of mozzarella. When you cut it open it just oozes out of the center and makes it very easy to spread on the bread. You can find it at the grocery store with the fresh mozzarella.
I adore this meal! It’s so simple. It’s the perfect fresh summer meal. And there’s just something about food that is meant to be shared. And eaten with your hands. And consumed with wine. For some reason it all makes it taste so much better! Don’t you agree?