Burrata with Arugula Pesto and Marinated Heirloom Tomato

Burrata

Burrata with Arugula Pesto and Marinated Heirloom Tomato

Summer is in full swing and to me that means highlighting the best tomatoes.  Is there a better way than with fresh herbs, great olive oil and hand crafted burrata?  How do you achieve the Italian treat of a fresh mozzarella shell filled with a creamy ricotta-like mozzarella cheese?  Well, I’ll tell you…

Hand-crafted Burrata

Ingredients:

  • 2 lbs. curd (recipe follows)
  • sea salt
  • 1 pint heavy cream

Preparation:

  1. Before getting started prepare a bowl of lightly salted cool water to drop your pouches of burrata into when they are finished.
  2. After making your curd (see recipe below) allow the curd to come to room temperature and cut it into 1 inch cubes.
  3. In a large pot, boil water and add a good amount of salt.  Taste the water- it should taste like seawater. Turn the flame to very low or off and add the curd cubes.
  4. With your hands knead the curd so that it begins to come together.
  5. After a few turns remove about ¼ of the curd and begin stringing it apart.
  6. Add enough heavy cream to the frayed curd so that it resembles the consistency of ricotta and set aside.
  7. Continue kneading the remaining curd till soft and malleable.
  8. Pinch off 3 inch balls from the curd, and while still hot spread it into a thin disc.  If it cools too much and looses its pliability dunk in into the warm water.
  9. Scoop heavy cream-cheese filling into the curd you have spread thin and immediately close all the ends to resemble a little pouch.

Arugula Pesto

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups (packed) arugula leaves
  • ¼ cup pine nuts, toasted
  • ¼ cup (packed) freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 3 ea Garlic cloves
  • Salt and Pepper

Preparation:

  1. Blend arugula, pine nuts Garlic and Parmesan cheese in processor until almost smooth.
  2. Slowly add olive oil; process until well blended.
  3. Season pesto to taste with salt and pepper.

Heirloom Tomato Salad

Ingredients:

  • 3 Tbs balsamic vinegar
  • 2 Tbs  extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 lbs.  mixed firm-ripe heirloom or other tomatoes
  • 3 Tbs chopped fresh mint leaves
  • 3 Tbs chopped fresh basil leaves
  • Salt and cracked black pepper

Preparation:

  1. In a small bowl, whisk together vinegar and oil.
  2. Rinse and core tomatoes, slice 1/3 to 1/2 inch thick.
  3. Drizzle vinegar mixture and sprinkle mint, basil, salt, and pepper evenly over tomatoes.

Fresh Mozzarella Curd

What you will need:

  • 1 gallon whole milk (just be sure that it is not Ultra-pasteurized, any other kind will work, store bought, fresh from the cow)
  • 1 tsp. citric acid
  • 1/4 rennet tablet
  • 2 tsp. cheese salt
  • A big pot
  • Thermometer
  • Slotted spoon

Preparation:

  1. Place milk in large pot with thermometer.
  2. Sprinkle 1 tsp. citric acid over milk and stir.
  3. Turn heat on med-low and heat milk to 90 degrees, stirring occasionally.
  4. While you are heating the milk, dissolve 1/4 rennet tablet in 1/4 C. cool water.
  5. When milk has reached 90 degrees, turn off heat.  Pour rennet over slotted spoon into milk and stir for 20-30 seconds.
  6. Remove thermometer and let milk sit undisturbed for 8-10 minutes.
  7. Milk should be like a thick gelatin.  Cut the curd into a grid pattern and remove from whey with a slotted spoon.

 

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