Tomato, Mozzarella and Basil Sandwich

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About: I've worked for Instructables off and on since 2006 building and documenting just about everything I enjoy doing. I am now the Creative Programs founder and manager for Autodesk and just finished building o...

One of my favorite sandwiches of all time is the tomato, mozzarella and basil sandwich. It's simple, doesn't require any cooking, and is really really tasty.

Step 1: Ingredients

A tomato, mozzarella and basil sandwich has the following ingredients:

  • ripe tomatoes
  • fresh mozzarella (this is the soft stuff in liquid - not the hard kind you put on pizza)
  • Italian bread or a baguette
  • fresh basil
  • olive oil
  • balsamic vinegar
  • salt and pepper

Some people like to add in additional elements to this sandwich, like avocado, prosciutto, roasted peppers and more. I like it just fine with the basic ingredients.

Step 2: Slice the Tomatoes and the Mozzarella, and Chiffonade the Basil

The first step is to start slicing the tomatoes and mozzarella. Cut the mozzarella and the tomatoes at roughly the same thickness - about a 1/4". This is a bit thicker than sandwich shops will cut their tomatoes and mozzarella but since I am making it myself I get to cut it how I like it.

Having a sharp knife really helps cut through a soft ripe tomato. If you push too hard you will crush it, so be careful.

I like to cut basil in a chiffonade - which is a fancy way of creating thing uniform strips out of a bunch of leaves like basil, spinach or lettuce. See my instructable on How to Chiffonade for detailed instructions.

But by all means, cut, rip, or chop the basil up any way you like.

Step 3: Assemble the Sandwich

To assemble the sandwich begin to lay your slices of tomato and mozzarella.

I like to lay the tomato down first in a cascade manner where the top of each tomato rests on the bottom of the one above it. I this ensures total tomato coverage and allows me to stack a few more slices than if I just laid them down flat on the bread.

On top of the tomato goes the mozzarella cheese. Again, I like to use a cascading effect to maximize my cheese to area ratio.

After the cheese comes the basil. I like to add in a pretty liberal amount, so what is pictured below might be a bit more than you might like on your sandwich.

Step 4: Seasonings

The sandwich is finished off with some olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper.

Put the olive oil and vinegar on first, and then add on the salt and pepper - this way the salt and pepper will stick to the sandwich and wont get "washed away" when you pour on the liquids.

I like the sandwich to be a little wet, which means that it can get a little messy to eat with all the olive oil and vinegar. If your going to be making ahead of time, or need to be able to eat it without making a mess put on less oil and vinegar.


Step 5: Finished Sandwich

Put on the top piece of bread and you are finished with the sandwich.

Modifications/Improvements to the basic sandwich can include:

  • adding your olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper to your tomatoes and mozzarella before you assemble the sandwich so that the liquids don't make the bread wet and soggy.
  • pre-salting the tomatoes before you assemble once they are sliced. This helps draw some water out of the tomatoes and makes them taste better once the sandwich is assembled.
  • toasting the bread if you like a crunchy sandwich.

Enjoy.

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    24 Discussions

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    Abratforarat

    3 years ago

    I made this and it was SO good! I made it everyday for lunch in the summer when i had the good supplies! YUM!!!!!!!!!!!

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    duncangallimore

    5 years ago on Step 5

    Going to have this for lunch tomorrow. Looks delicious. Thanks!

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    animaldito

    11 years ago on Introduction

    looks awesome. does someone knows how is "basil" in portuguese ? looks delicious, but by the pictures i could not identify it how is called around here.

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    menkhafanimaldito

    Reply 11 years ago on Introduction

    Basil in Portuguese is "alfavaca". Have a look at [http://pt.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alfavaca]...

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    climber_geekanimaldito

    Reply 11 years ago on Introduction

    I don't know but maybe I can give you a hint. Basil is an herb. You eat the leaves. It tastes sort of sweet and minty, but it's not mint. It is used a lot in Italian food. You can make pesto with it.

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    BrittLiv

    8 years ago on Introduction

    Hi, I made it with the left overs I had from killerjackalope's "Simple Stuffed Peppers" (Sorry the lightning is really bad and I was to lazy to cut the basil ;-))

    IMG_1517.JPG
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    airfidget

    8 years ago on Introduction

    OMG. I love this sandwich. A couple suggestions, or at least, the way I do it. Make it kind of like a pressed Cuban. So get a Ciabatta roll to put everything on instead of just loaf bread, light up the grill, set the whole sandwich on there and then wrap a brick in foil and put it on the sandwich. I can't remember how long I put it on for, but I probably flipped it 2-3 minutes in and then left it on another 2 minutes or so. Just to where everything gets warm, ciabatta gets crispy, cheese gets melty. Mmmm... I'm at work, but I think I need to go get a second lunch here soon.

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    JarrydGothix

    9 years ago on Introduction

    Made my own with pesto, came out awesome! I recommend some definitely firm tomatoes for this, the softer ones just can't stand up to being handled in a sandwich. Also for some reason my mozzarella fell apart. I am a messy sandwich eater.

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    theophilus

    9 years ago on Introduction

    I do believe that, without the bread (though it is usually served on bread), this known as CAPRESE SALAD... for anyone interested

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    ANTQNUT

    9 years ago on Step 5

    YUM! I tried making this and its delish!!!!!!!!!

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    boombam

    10 years ago on Introduction

    try a little pesto for a genuine nutty flavor, or maybe make your own with a simple mixture of pine nuts, little olive oil, and basil, blend it up and serve! [Grocery bought pesto isn't usually the way to go because they use lots of oil and replace pine nuts with walnuts. it also isn't fresh basil. you can find really expensive at specialty italian stores

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    patfromct1954

    10 years ago on Introduction

    this is also really good grilled. There is a little sandwich shop in Easton, PA who introduced me to this sandwich and they grill it as a panini!! Wonderful!!

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    saumijoon

    10 years ago on Introduction

    Okay, just tried the recipe, all I can say, AWESOME! The great thing about this recipe is that it is so simple to make and it tastes amazing. It is also quite healthy for you. Thank you so much for the idea.