Tomato, mozzarella, and basil are the key elements in a caprese salad. Just add a drizzle of olive oil, some fine vinegar, a little salt, and that's it! When tomatoes are in season, the basil is vivid green and fresh, and the mozzarella is creamy ... it's my go-to summer salad. Now, take that salad, add some gently cooked broccoli rabe , place it all on a ciabatta, top it with a bit of thick balsamic glaze, and you've got perfection.
Caprese Sandwich with Spicy Broccoli Rabe
Makes 2 sandwiches
2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 clove garlic, thinly sliced
1 anchovy fillet, finely chopped
4 cups broccoli rabe leaves and small florets, well washed and coarsely chopped
1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons brown sugar
1/4 cup mayo
2 ciabatta rolls, split horizontally
6 ounces mozzarella, cut into 6 slices
Fresh basil leaves, about 12
1 tomato (about 6 ounces), cored and thickly sliced
1. In a medium skillet, heat the oil over medium-low. Add the garlic and anchovy; cook until the anchovy has melted, about 2 minutes. Add the broccoli rabe and red pepepr flakes; season with salt. Raise the heat to medium and cook, stirring frequently until the broccoli rabe is tender, 5 to 7 minutes. Cool to room temperature and then squeeze to remove liquid.
2. In a small skillet, bring the vinegar and sugar to a boil over medium. Cook until reduced to 2 tablespoons, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a bowl, cool slightly, and whisk in the mayo. Season with salt.
3. Spread the balsamic-mayo mixture on both sides of the bread. Top one side with 3 slices of mozzarella, and season with salt. Top with a few basil leaves and the tomato slices; season with salt. Top with the broccoli rabe and close the sandwiches.