The key to this sandwich is making sure that you use the best possible ingredients, and that means waiting all year long until the end of summer when you can get the freshest, most delicious tomatoes at the peak of their season. Don't even think about trying to make this with bland, mealy, refrigerated supermarket tomatoes in the middle of winter, you'll regret it. Plus, that extra long wait makes the sandwich that much more special when you finally do have one, and the good thing is, we are in the peak of the tomato season right now! As soon as you're done reading this, I suggest you go get yourself some. Pair the sandwich with a simple salad and a glass of wine and you've got an amazingly light, refreshing, and incredibly tasty summer meal.
Wash and slice the tomatoes into 1/4 inch thick slices. Slice the mozzarella as well.
Pick some fresh basil leaves off of their stems, rinse and dry them. Get out your best extra virgin olive oil.
Generously drizzle the olive oil over both halves of the bread. Layer the mozzarella slightly overlapping and completely covering one half of the loaf.
Layer the tomatoes over the mozzarella, and sprinkle generously with salt and fresh ground black pepper. Top the tomatoes with a layer of basil leaves.
Top the sandwich with the other half of the bread, slice carefully into pieces, and enjoy!
15 minutes - Serves 2 to 4 as a meal depending on appetite
- One large loaf of crusty bread (not baguette, something wider)
- extra virgin olive oil
- about 4 medium size balls of fresh mozzarella, sliced into 1/8 to 1/4 inch slices
- 2 large, ripe tomatoes (whichever variety you prefer), rinsed and sliced into 1/4 inch slices
- 10 to 20 leaves of fresh basil, stemmed, rinsed and dried
- kosher salt (1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon)
- fresh ground black pepper (about 1/4 teaspoon)
- Slice the bread in half lengthwise
- Generously drizzle olive oil over both halves of the bread
- Layer one side of the bread with the mozzarella slices, slightly overlapping and completely covering the bread
- Layer the tomatoes over the mozzarella
- Sprinkle salt and pepper over the tomatoes, add more or less to taste
- Top the tomatoes with a layer of basil
- Place the other half of the bread on top, press down slightly and carefully slice the sandwich into as few as 2 or as many as 8 slices (and smaller and it's hard to slice/eat without the sandwich falling apart)