Tomato Mozzarella and Arugula Tower Recipe

This is a light yet flavorful dish that combines the freshness of raw ingredients to create a satisfying meal. The Tomato, Mozzarella, and Arugula Tower is a visually pleasing dish that is perfect for a light lunch or an appetizer. The peppery arugula, juicy tomatoes, and creamy mozzarella are layered to form a tower, topped off with a drizzle of a homemade basil balsamic dressing.

Tomato Mozzarella and Arugula Tower Recipe
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All of these ingredients should be readily available in most supermarkets, but it's worth noting a few things. The tomatoes chosen should be ripe and juicy, but firm enough to hold their shape when sliced. Part-skim mozzarella is chosen for this recipe for its lower fat content, but any type of soft mozzarella will work. Arugula, also known as rocket, is a leafy green with a peppery taste. If you can’t find arugula, baby spinach or mixed salad greens can work as a substitute.

Ingredients for Tomato, Mozzarella, and Arugula Tower

Basil: Fresh basil brings a sweet and savory flavor that complements the tomatoes and mozzarella. Balsamic vinegar: This acidic ingredient adds a tangy touch to the dressing.

Olive oil: Olive oil is the base for the dressing, balancing out the acidity of the vinegar.

Tomatoes: Tomatoes are the star of this dish, providing a burst of fresh, juicy flavor.

Mozzarella: Mozzarella adds a creamy texture and mild flavor that pairs well with the other ingredients.

Arugula: Arugula provides a peppery bite that contrasts the creaminess of the mozzarella.

One reader, Anallese Bollinger says:

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This tomato, mozzarella, and arugula tower recipe is a delightful and refreshing dish. The flavors blend perfectly, and the presentation is stunning. It's a simple yet elegant recipe that's perfect for a light and satisfying meal. I highly recommend trying it out!

Anallese Bollinger

Mastering the Techniques for a Perfect Tower Recipe

How to prepare the basil vinaigrette: Blend basil, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt, and pepper in a small blender until smooth.

How to slice the tomatoes: Slice the top and bottom off the tomatoes, then cut them into 3 equal slices, seasoning each slice with a pinch of salt while keeping the tomato intact to assemble it the same way it was cut.

How to assemble the towers: Layer the tomato, mozzarella, and arugula to create two towers, topping the tomatoes with the remaining arugula and fresh cracked pepper. Drizzle with the prepared basil vinaigrette.

How To Make Tomato Mozzarella and Arugula Tower

Made of arugula, fresh tomatoes, and part-skim mozzarella, this tower salad recipe is ideal for a light lunch. Top off with balsamic, olive oil, and basil.

Preparation:
Cooking:
Total:

Serves:

Ingredients

  • ¼cupfresh basil,chopped
  • 1tbspbalsamic vinegar
  • 2tbspolive oil
  • Kosher salt and fresh pepper,to taste
  • 2medium tomatoes,ripe
  • 3ozpart-skim mozzarella,sliced into 6 slices
  • 2cupsarugula

Instructions

  1. In a small blender, combine basil, olive oil, balsamic, a pinch of salt, and fresh cracked pepper.

  2. Blend until smooth.

  3. Slice the top and bottom of the tomato, discard.

  4. Cut the tomato into 3 equal slices and season with a pinch of salt, keeping the tomato intact to assemble the same way it was cut.

  5. Place ¾ cup of arugula on each plate.

  6. Create two towers by layering the tomato, mozzarella, arugula, until two towers have formed, one on each plate.

  7. Top tomatoes with the remaining arugula and fresh cracked pepper. Drizzle with oil and vinegar.

Nutrition

  • Calories: 263.80kcal
  • Fat: 20.69g
  • Saturated Fat: 6.23g
  • Monounsaturated Fat: 11.82g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat: 1.81g
  • Carbohydrates: 8.54g
  • Fiber: 2.00g
  • Sugar: 5.33g
  • Protein: 12.11g
  • Cholesterol: 27.22mg
  • Sodium: 489.87mg
  • Calcium: 387.37mg
  • Potassium: 427.39mg
  • Iron: 1.01mg
  • Vitamin A: 137.56µg
  • Vitamin C: 20.39mg

Pro Tip for Elevating Your Tomato, Mozzarella, and Arugula Tower

When layering the tomato, mozzarella, and arugula to form the towers, it's important to balance the ingredients evenly. This not only ensures a stable structure but also provides a balanced flavor in every bite. To achieve this, try to use tomatoes and mozzarella of similar diameter and cut them into equal thickness. Also, gently press down each layer before adding the next to ensure the tower doesn't topple over.

Time-Saving Tips for Preparing This Tower Recipe

Prep ahead: Chop and marinate the tomatoes, and prepare the basil vinaigrette in advance to save time during assembly.

Use a mandoline: Slice the tomatoes and mozzarella evenly and quickly using a mandoline slicer for uniformity and efficiency.

Organize ingredients: Set up a workstation with all ingredients prepped and ready to assemble for a smoother and quicker process.

Multi-task: While the tomatoes are marinating, prepare the arugula and mozzarella to maximize efficiency in the kitchen.

Assembly line: Set up an assembly line for building the towers, making it easier to layer the ingredients quickly and efficiently.

Pre-cut ingredients: Purchase pre-sliced mozzarella to save time on slicing and ensure even, consistent slices for the towers.

Team effort: Enlist a friend or family member to help with assembly, making the process quicker and more enjoyable.

Substitute Ingredients For Tomato Mozzarella and Arugula Tower Recipe

  • tomato - Substitute with red bell pepper: Red bell peppers have a similar sweet and slightly tangy flavor to tomatoes, and their crunchy texture can provide a nice contrast in the dish.

  • mozzarella - Substitute with burrata: Burrata has a creamy texture and a rich, buttery flavor similar to mozzarella, but with an added indulgent creaminess that can elevate the dish.

  • arugula - Substitute with baby spinach: Baby spinach has a mild, slightly peppery flavor similar to arugula, and its tender leaves can provide a pleasant contrast to the other ingredients in the tower.

Presenting the Tomato, Mozzarella, and Arugula Tower

  1. Elevate the tower: Carefully stack the tomato, mozzarella, and arugula to create a visually stunning tower that showcases the layers of flavors and textures.

  2. Artful drizzle: Use a steady hand to elegantly drizzle the basil-infused olive oil and balsamic vinegar over the towers, creating a beautiful and appetizing presentation.

  3. Garnish with basil: Place a small, vibrant basil leaf on top of each tower to add a pop of color and a fresh, aromatic element to the dish.

  4. Precision plating: Pay attention to the placement of each element on the plate, ensuring that the towers are centered and the arugula is artfully arranged around them.

  5. Use high-quality ingredients: Source the freshest, ripest tomatoes, the creamiest mozzarella, and the most vibrant arugula to ensure a visually appealing and delicious dish.

  6. Balance and symmetry: Aim for uniformity in the size and shape of the towers, creating a sense of balance and symmetry on the plate.

  7. Attention to detail: Wipe any excess oil or vinegar from the edges of the plate to maintain a clean and polished presentation.

  8. Final touch: Just before serving, sprinkle a pinch of flaky sea salt and a crack of black pepper over the towers for a finishing touch that enhances the flavors and adds a touch of sophistication.

Essential Tools for Crafting a Stunning Tower Recipe

  • Blender: A blender is a versatile kitchen tool that can be used to puree, mix, and emulsify ingredients. It's perfect for creating smooth sauces, dressings, and purees.

  • Knife: A sharp knife is essential for slicing tomatoes and mozzarella with precision and ease. It's important to use a good quality, sharp knife to ensure clean cuts.

  • Cutting board: A cutting board provides a stable surface for slicing and assembling the tomato, mozzarella, and arugula tower. It also helps protect your countertops from knife marks.

  • Plates: Plates are essential for presenting and serving the tomato, mozzarella, and arugula towers. Choose plates that complement the presentation of the dish.

  • Small blender: A small blender is used to create the basil vinaigrette. It's perfect for blending small quantities of ingredients to create a smooth and flavorful dressing.

  • Measuring spoons: Measuring spoons are essential for accurately portioning out the balsamic vinegar, olive oil, and other seasonings used in the recipe. This ensures the perfect balance of flavors in the basil vinaigrette.

  • Mixing bowl: A mixing bowl may be used for tossing the arugula with the basil vinaigrette before plating. It's important to use a bowl large enough to comfortably toss the arugula without spilling.

Fascinating Facts About the Ingredients Used

Tomato, mozzarella, and arugula are classic ingredients in Italian cuisine, often used together in dishes such as Caprese salad.

Budget-Friendly: Making the Tower Recipe at Home

The cost-effectiveness of this tomato, mozzarella, and arugula tower recipe is quite high. The ingredients are relatively affordable and easily accessible. The use of simple, fresh ingredients like tomatoes, mozzarella, and arugula keeps the cost down while delivering great flavor and nutrition. The approximate cost for a household of 4 people would be around $10-$12, making it a budget-friendly option. The overall verdict rating for this recipe would be 9/10, considering its simplicity, taste, and affordability.

Is This Tower Recipe Healthy or Unhealthy?

The tomato, mozzarella, and arugula tower recipe is a relatively healthy dish, offering a balance of fresh vegetables, healthy fats, and protein. Here's a breakdown of the nutritional aspects:

  • Tomatoes are rich in vitamin C, potassium, and the antioxidant lycopene, which has been linked to reduced risk of heart disease and certain cancers.
  • Mozzarella provides protein and calcium, essential for bone health, but it is also a source of saturated fat.
  • Arugula is a nutrient-dense leafy green, providing vitamins A, C, and K, as well as folate and calcium.
  • Olive oil is a healthy source of monounsaturated fats, which can help reduce inflammation and improve heart health.
  • Basil adds flavor and contains beneficial plant compounds, such as antioxidants and anti-inflammatory agents.

However, the recipe could be further optimized for health:

  • Use a reduced-fat mozzarella to lower the saturated fat content without compromising taste or texture.
  • Increase the proportion of arugula to boost the dish's nutrient density and fiber content.
  • Add more colorful vegetables, such as roasted red peppers or grilled zucchini, to enhance the variety of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
  • Experiment with whole grain or seed-based crackers as an accompaniment to increase the fiber and nutrient content of the meal.
  • Use a high-quality, extra-virgin olive oil to maximize the potential health benefits of the monounsaturated fats and polyphenols.

Editor's Take on the Tomato, Mozzarella, and Arugula Tower

The tomato, mozzarella, and arugula tower recipe is a delightful combination of fresh flavors and textures. The use of balsamic vinegar and olive oil in the basil dressing adds a burst of tangy sweetness, complementing the juicy tomatoes and creamy mozzarella. The arugula provides a peppery bite, balancing the dish perfectly. The presentation as towers adds an elegant touch, making it a visually appealing dish. Overall, this recipe is a wonderful choice for a light and refreshing appetizer or a side dish.

Enhance Your Tomato Mozzarella and Arugula Tower Recipe with These Unique Side Dishes:

Garlic Parmesan Roasted Asparagus: Try serving the tomato, mozzarella, and arugula tower with a side of roasted asparagus drizzled with garlic and parmesan for a flavorful and healthy accompaniment.
Balsamic Glazed Grilled Peaches: For a sweet and tangy side, grill some peaches and drizzle them with balsamic glaze to complement the savory flavors of the tower.
Creamy Polenta with Roasted Vegetables: Whip up a creamy polenta and top it with roasted vegetables for a hearty and satisfying side dish to pair with the tower.

Delicious Alternatives to the Classic Tower Recipe

Grilled Vegetable Skewers: These skewers are a perfect addition to any BBQ, with a variety of colorful vegetables and a delicious marinade.
Mango Salsa Chicken: This dish combines the sweetness of mango with the savory flavors of grilled chicken, creating a perfect summer meal.
Creamy Mushroom Risotto: Indulge in this rich and creamy risotto, packed with earthy mushrooms and a hint of white wine for a luxurious dinner option.
Berry Chia Seed Pudding: Enjoy a healthy and delicious dessert with this berry chia seed pudding, packed with antioxidants and omega-3 fatty acids.
Butternut Squash Soup: Warm up with a comforting bowl of butternut squash soup, seasoned with aromatic spices and a touch of cream for a velvety texture.

Perfect Main Courses and Desserts to Pair With the Tower

Main Courses:
Chicken Marsala: Create a rich and flavorful dish by sautéing tender chicken breasts in a savory mushroom and Marsala wine sauce. Serve it over a bed of al dente pasta for a satisfying and elegant meal.
Beef Wellington: Impress your guests with a classic Beef Wellington, featuring a perfectly cooked beef tenderloin wrapped in flaky puff pastry and served with a velvety mushroom duxelles. This show-stopping dish is sure to be a hit at any dinner party.
Desserts:
Chocolate Mousse: Indulge in a rich and velvety chocolate mousse, topped with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkle of cocoa powder. The perfect way to satisfy your sweet tooth!
Apple Crisp: Savor the warm and comforting flavors of baked apples, cinnamon, and a crispy oat topping. Pair with a scoop of vanilla ice cream for a delightful treat.

Why trust this Tomato Mozzarella and Arugula Tower Recipe:

This recipe is a testament to the classic combination of tomato, mozzarella, and arugula. The use of fresh basil and balsamic vinegar in the dressing enhances the flavors. The olive oil adds a rich and smooth texture, while the seasoning with kosher salt and fresh pepper brings out the natural taste of the ingredients. The careful assembly of the tower showcases the attention to detail and presentation. Trust in the simplicity and quality of these ingredients to create a delightful and satisfying dish.

If you've tried this Tomato Mozzarella and Arugula Tower Recipe, we'd love to hear your thoughts and see your creations in the Recipe Sharing section of the forum.
FAQ:
What type of tomatoes should I use for this recipe?
You can use any ripe and flavorful tomatoes for this recipe. I recommend using vine-ripened or heirloom tomatoes for the best flavor and texture.
Can I use a different type of cheese instead of mozzarella?
Absolutely! Feel free to experiment with different types of cheese. Goat cheese, feta, or even a creamy burrata would work well in this recipe.
Is there a substitute for arugula if I can't find it?
If you can't find arugula, you can use baby spinach or mixed salad greens as a substitute. The peppery flavor of arugula is unique, but these alternatives will still complement the dish.
Can I prepare the basil vinaigrette in advance?
Yes, you can prepare the basil vinaigrette ahead of time. Store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Just give it a good shake before using it.
How can I make this recipe more filling?
To make this dish more filling, you can add a layer of grilled eggplant or roasted bell peppers between the tomato and mozzarella. You can also serve it with a side of crusty bread or a protein of your choice.

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