Natasha's Tomato, Avocado, Basil Salad
photo by karen
- Ready In:
- 3 -4 vine ripened tomatoes
- 8 -12 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese
- 2 ripe avocados
- 1⁄2 - 1 small red onion (optional)
- 12 -16 fresh basil leaves
- kosher salt or sea salt, to taste to taste
- fresh ground black pepper
Fresh Basil Dressing
- 1 cup packed fresh basil leaf
- 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar (I use white balsamic because it helps keep the color of the dressing vibrant, but the regular balsam)
- 2 tablespoons chopped shallots or 2 tablespoons finely chopped onions
- 3⁄4 teaspoon kosher salt or 3/4 teaspoon sea salt
- fresh ground black pepper
- Slice tomatoes into medium sized slices.
- Slice mozzarella into medium sized slices (not too thin or too thick).
- Cut avocados in half lengthwise, remove and discard pits, slice diagonally into medium sized slices, trying to keep them as the same size as the tomatoes and mozzarella slices.
- Slice red onion very thinly sliced (if using).
- On medium sized plate or platter, arrange tomatoes, avocados, onions, and mozzarella, shingle style - filling the outer rim of plate and working your way into the middle. Fit in a basil leaf on top of the mozzarella slices.
- Lightly salt and sprinkle black pepper over the top to taste.
- Drizzle with Fresh Basil Dressing to taste. Note that all of the dressing is not meant to be used. Reserve remainder for other use. (Great on sandwiches, salads, topping for some soups, etc.).
- Decorate with more fresh basil leaves if desired.
Fresh Basil Dressing:
- Blend the basil, oil, mayonnaise, vinegar, shallots or onions, salt and pepper in a blender or food processor until smooth. Refrigerate until ready to use.
- NOTE: If serving this salad for company, you may want to slice the avocado at the last minute because it browns easily. To prevent this from happening too quickly, you may sprinkle the avocado with lemon juice. But it's just as easy slicing the avocado at the last minute and fitting it under the tomato slices.
Questions & Replies
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I don't know why, but I really wasn't expecting a lot out of this recipe, since fresh mozzarella and avocado don't have very overt flavor. However, this was phenomenal! The dressing is fantastic (I used the white balsamic and shallots, and I have since used it in sandwiches, salads, etc.) and the simplicity of the dish really made it sing! I did not have red onion, so omitted that. Beautiful presentation, too! Thanks for sharing this sleeper keeper!
Wow. This was really great. I knew I would like the mix of mozzarella, tomato, avocado and basil, but the pesto sauce is outstanding. I actually opted for using grape tomatoes and small balls of fresh mozzarella, cut in half. I layered the salad in a small bowl and it was wonderful. The sauce would be great on a sandwich, over chicken, maybe even as the sauce on a pizza. Definitely a keeper.
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