The Easiest and Prettiest 5-Minute Salad You’ll Ever Make

I’m half Italian, which means half of my body is made entirely of mozzarella cheese and tomato. Which is exactly why this is one of my favorite salads to make. (It can be a starter salad, or a full-on meal, depending on how many layers you make!)

Tomato and MozzarellaI LOVE fresh mozzarella. The stringed kind is fucking great too, but there’s really nothing better than the fresh stuff. It’s delicate, soft, and pairs super well with tomatoes.

A tomato and mozzarella salad is really light but also incredibly tasty. (I actually had this one for dinner last night, because we’d had a heavy BBQ lunch.) Plus, it looks so pretty on a plate that people will think you’re some kind of chef unicorn and assume you put a lot of time and effort into this salad. It literally takes 5 minutes, maybe 3 if you’re an EXPERT.

Did I mention the ingredients you need to buy are just really tomato and fresh mozzarella? (Assuming you have all the other stuff.)

Here’s what you’ll need:

Tomato and Mozzarella Salad (serves 2):
  • 1¬†container of fresh mozzarella in water (look for one that has 2 sizable mozzarella balls, not the ones with a munch of minis!)
  • 2 red, ripe tomatoes
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 2 tablespoon of balsamic vinaigrette
Directions:
  1. Wash tomatoes thoroughly, then cut them into smallish flat slices. (Each slice should look like a pizza pie crust, because pizza is great.)
  2. Remove the mozzarella balls from the water, and cut them into slices.
  3. Take out a plate and layer your salad with a mozzarella slice, then tomato, mozzarella slice, then tomato. (Each plate should get 1 mozzarella ball, and one fully sliced tomato.)
  4. Sprinkle your masterpiece with plenty of pepper.
  5. Drizzle a tablespoon of olive oil over each plate.
  6. Drizzle a tablespoon of balsamic over each place.
  7. Finish with a sprinkling of salt over everything. (I use a lot of salt, but I really love salt.)
  8. Garnish with basil or fresh spinach if you’re feeling fancy.

Anyone who eats this at your table will think you’re the fanciest cook ever, I promise. Plus, it tastes so fresh and wonderful. Enjoy!

Ginger Snap Cookies For The New Year

Before you start your New Year’s resolutions and give up gluten, or start a juice cleanse, or beg your friend Tom to cook you healthy food for a week… Can you guess which one I plan to do?

Anyway, before you start all that, you should make these cookies as your final hoorah.
Ginger Snaps

My Aunt Katherine is FAMOUS for these ginger snaps. And by “famous,” I mean that my cousin Stuart told me they are awesome, so I decided to make them.

The trick to making these is to use fresh ginger. If that sounds intimidating, it isn’t. I legit Googled how to do it, because I’d never grated ginger before, and found this weird but also helpful video.¬† All you need is a piece of ginger and a cheese grater. It’s super simple, and it made the cookies really have that fresh ginger kick to them.

Ginger Snap Recipe

I put these out as part of the dessert for a dinner party, and needless to say they went FAST. I made them small enough, so that you don’t feel too badly about having two. Or three. Or as many as you can cram into your mouth.

Also, this recipe makes a solid 4 1/2 dozen, so they make a great gift to send people home with as well.

What you’ll need:

1 cup sugar.
2 cups flour.
1/2 teaspoon salt.
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves. 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon. 1 teaspoon ground ginger.
1 teaspoon baking soda.
3/4 cup Crisco.
1/4 cup molasses.
1 egg, slightly beaten.

Directions (verbatim from my Aunt):

Combine dry ingredients. Add Crisco and mix together until crumbly. Add molasses and egg. Mix until well blended. (I make mine in the food processor.)

Form dough into 1 inch balls. Roll in sugar. Place on ungreased cookie sheet. Press slightly to flatten a little. (I use the bottom of a glass, dipped in sugar)

Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes.