How many times can one walk past the olive bar in the grocery store without stopping to load up on fresh mozzarella? Especially when summer rolls around, this is nearly impossible for us. Dinners consisting of our favorite Italian cheese, perfectly ripened homegrown tomatoes, and fresh basil? We’re all.in. Then there was the day I swear Kyle thought he found gold the one time he added a “ring on” container (did I just date myself?) to the cart filled to the brim with marinated mozzarella.
I, on the other hand, was slightly underwhelmed by his find. Perhaps it’s because he drained off all of the olive oil because he refuses to pay anything extra than humanly possible for his $7.99 per pound olive bar finds. I get it…but not at the cost of flavor. So I decided recently to make my own. And umm, it couldn’t have been any easier – I’m almost embarrassed that I haven’t thought to do this before! In a flash, you’ll whip up an herbed olive oil then pour it over sliced fresh mozzarella and let the cheese, well, marinate. We snacked on this for dinner one lazy weekend night a few weeks back with some pepperoni and provolone-stuffed hot peppers…and maybe some wine…and guys? Only a loaf of crusty bread and The Godfather playing in the background could have made this a more perfect meal. Sweet Italian love.
Marinated Fresh Mozzarella
source: adapted from Martha Stewart Living, May 2008
This recipe calls for a pound of sliced fresh mozzarella (as in a large ball) but I’m sure that any smaller size ball of fresh mozzarella, will work great in place of large slices.
- 1 lb fresh mozzarella, cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
- 6 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/2 tsp dried thyme
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
- Serving suggestions: sliced pepperoni or other cured meats, olives, hot cherry peppers, crackers, crusty bread
- Lay the mozzarella slices out in large shallow platter. Whisk the olive oil, thyme, oregano, red pepper, 1/2 tsp salt, and 1/4 tsp pepper together in a small bowl.
- Pour the herbed olive oil evenly over the mozzarella, lifting the slices with a fork to allow the oil to seep underneath. Cover the platter with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 40 minutes, flipping the mozzarella after 20 minutes. If the mozzarella has soaked up a lot of the oil after 20 minutes, drizzle some extra over the cheese. Allow the cheese to stand at room temperature for 10 to 15 minutes before serving. Season with additional salt to taste before serving. Serve with suggestions above or any of your own!