House-Made Fresh Mozzarella W/ Smoked Heirloom Tomato Coulis, Basil & Toasted Olive Bread

Serves 4

2 cloves garlic, crushed
2 shallots, sliced
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
½ white wine
2 very ripe heirloom tomatoes, hand crushed
1 tablespoon smoked sea salt


-Sweat the garlic and shallot in the olive oil until soft over medium heat, then add wine and cook off rawness of alcohol for about 1 minute. Then add crushed tomatoes and smoked sea salt and let simmer for 15 minutes. Transfer to blender and carefully (so you don't get burned) puree until silky smooth, then strain through fine mesh sieve and chill.

12 ounces mozzarella curds
2 quarts water
1 cup kosher salt


-Bring salt and water to a simmer. Pass curds through glazing rack (or rough chop) and hold in medium sized stainless steel (or non-reactive) bowl. Ladle into bowl enough salt water until covered, then let rest for a minute. With a spoon, move all the bits together in to a ball. Carefully drain off water so that you don't lose any curds, then repeat. Next, be careful not to over work which squeezes out the delicous fats. With hands protected in 2 layers of disposable latex or vinyl gloves, work the curds like a dough to stretch and pull the now melting strings of cheese together into a ball and twist a tail closed on the bottom of the ball. Transfer to a bowl of ice cold water to set firm.

For plating:

1 loaf kalamata olive bread, cut into 4 or more thick slices
2 tablespoons butter
1 pint mixed cherry heirloom tomatoes
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Pinch of salt and ground black pepper
4 leaves fresh basil


-Toast thick slices of the olive bread with butter in large pan on stove top, or in broiler on cookie sheet until golden brown. Split or quarter cherry tomatoes and dress with olive oil, salt and pepper. Plate the chilled tomato coulis spreading a veneer of it across each plate, set the toasted olive bread in the center and top with the mozzarella. Garnish with the dressed cherry tomatoes and finish with freshly torn bits of basil leaves

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