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Roasted Red Pepper and Mozzarella Salad With Prosecco

This salad is a beautiful addition to any meal, and is super simple to make. Next time you are limited on time and want to bring or add a flavorful dish to your dinner party — this is it. This is perfect for summer, and you will soon find yourself always having these simple, quality ingredients on hand: fresh mozzarella, red pepper and basil leaves.  This medley of ripe summer goodness and a bottle of sparkling wine, particularly Prosecco, will quickly be the hit of any party!

Ingredients:

  • 1 ball fresh mozzarella (buffalo mozzarella can be used)
  • 1 large red pepper
  • 1/4 cup of quality olive oil
  • 1/4 cup basil leaves, julienned into small match sticks
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Roasting red peppers is actually a simple process and can be done on a grill, under the broiler or over the open flame on a gas stove. I chose to use the broiler, so first I drizzled olive oil on the peppers, tossing to coat. I placed the peppers under the broiler and rotated them as each side began to blister. Once all sides were blistered, I removed the peppers from the oven and allowed them to cool.

Note: If removing the skin, place the pepper in a small paper bag and roll the top to allow the pepper to steam for 10-12 minutes. Once cool enough to handle, remove and peel the skin. I decided to skip this step, leaving the skin on as a personal choice — your call. Pull the stems and remove the seeds. Cut the peppers into large chunks about 2 inches wide. Place them in a mason jar and coat with olive oil. Place them in the fridge until cool and the dish is ready to assemble.

Slice mozzarella into 1/4 inch pieces and layer, alternating cheese and roasted pepper slices. Top with basil, salt and freshly cracked pepper, then drizzle with olive oil to finish.

You do not have to wait for dinner, as this makes for a welcome summer lunch and is a great way to use up basil from the garden!