Cheese – It’s What’s for Dinner

We love cheese.  There are evenings when neither of us wants to cook, or we simply do not have an appetite for a big meal. Inevitably we head to the refrigerator in search of cheese. Add in olives, pickles, fruit, bread or crackers and of course a glass of wine and the snack becomes a light dinner.  We are not particularly fussy about what kind of cheese we eat.   While expensive artisanal cheeses are nice, we can also be satisfied with a smoked Gouda or sharp white cheddar. We are also big fans of goat cheese, which I shared here.

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Sharp Cheddar, sliced figs, prosciutto, whipped cream cheese smothered with pepper jam, and green olives

Recently we discovered Burata cheese, which is similar to mozzarella, but with much more cream. The outer skin is firm, but the inside has a buttery silk consistency that is heaven in a bite.  Lately, we noticed that our local food markets are carrying it, so we have been actively looking for ways to serve it at home.  Malcolm searched a few trusted cooking websites and came up with several recipes that are wonderful. The one we will share today is pretty basic and allows the cheese to be the star.  In fact, it is so simple that a recipe isn’t really needed. If you know how to toss a salad you can handle this.

Process:  Toss a cup of heirloom grape tomatoes, cut in half with olive oil and balsamic vinegar.  A rule of thumb is to use 1 part vinegar to 3 parts oil; set aside.  Toss two cups of spring mix and a few large basil leaves together with a light drizzle of oil. Divide the greens between two plates.  Depending on the size of the Burata, you might want to serve one whole piece, or cut it in half as shown here.  It can be tricky to maintain the shape of the cheese when cutting, so be prepared for it to fall apart.  If that happens, don’t worry, it might not be as pretty, but it will taste the same! If you are successful, (and you will be most of the time) place the cut side down on the greens, then surround it with the tomatoes and dressing. Finish with salt and pepper.

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Add some crusty bread and a bottle of wine to the table, and there you have it – Dinner in five minutes!  You could also serve this as a great beginning to a nice Italian dinner.

 

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