Several years ago, when we were in Landau, somewhere in southwest Germany, we stopped at the marktplatz’s sandwich shop for a late lunch. I was just looking for the pictures to post here, and saw the name of the sandwich shop! I googled it, and voila!! I found it online, or at least some information online… it is in Deutsch though, so I can’t read it at all… The name is Back-Cafe-Panaderia. This is the English version via Google translator…
Here was the cafe back then..
This shop was a typical bakery shop in Germany. They had all kinds of fresh bread, pastries, sweets, cakes and this shop also served some hot dishes/appetizer. I was just miserable in Germany, I wanted to stop at every single pastry shop, looked at what they had, and wanted to try to eat every single different kind of bread they had! It was impossible!! Then, I also was looking around for the italian ice cream, because they were delish too! Basically I just wanted to eat when I was there.. :) Who wouldn’t?
Now then.. when we were there, we looked around the shop, ordered what we thought would be tasty to our palate… you know, sometimes you just don’t know if it looks good, it also taste good.. Case in point with the photo below with the chocolate mousse cake… It looked delicious, tasty, but when we ate it (we all shared), we were disappointed. It looked a lot better than it tasted… I don’t remember now the taste of the cake… but I do remember we were all disappointed..
So, in addition to the cold sandwiches and the cake we had, we also had some hot dish stuff. I don’t know what it was called. Basically it was very similar to the caprese salad, but, it was baked. The melted cheese, the herbs they use, tomatoes; it was simple yet so delicious. We were all impressed by this dish. I looked online and just could not find anything resemblance to this dish. Of course, we devoured the thing and forgot to take a picture, so I can’t even share that with you.
Several days before that, we were in Salzburg, Austria. We were only there half a day, so we did not cover a lot and see what we wanted to see. We were in tight schedule back then. We stopped at this hotel, and sat at the side walk tables, and order some appetizers for our light lunch. Guess what we order? Insalata caprese salad :) Their caprese salad came with grilled egg plant, it was really yummy! Look at this picture, courtesy of Katie and Tony..
Even Tony who normally would not eat raw tomato, ate the the caprese salad… So, all these talk about past travel and the food, guess where I was heading? My own kitchen :)
I made caprese salad for dinner Monday night, and I also wanted to try to make the baked dish. I was at Kroger Monday evening to get a fresh Italian bread to go with the salad, and saw this cheese, pecorino romano (mind you, I have not clue about cheese at all other than the shredded kind on the dairy isle). I thought I would try and baked the thing with the mozzarella cheese.. well, it was an experiment all right…
Here were the stuff I had for dinner Monday night. I forewent the salami since we ended up with quite a lot of food for two people.
I found those mozarella balls, they were quite cute! :)
These were easier to slice too. I bought a log size mozzarella from Sam’s Club before, and they were harder to slice and it actually messed up its oval shape when I cut them.
So I just sliced them, sliced some roma tomatoes, wash some fresh basil leaves. Then I arranged them alternatively to get that pretty look. I only used extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinaigrette for the dressing. I had a recipe that involves garlic and onion, but I just want to try it with plain EVOO and the balsamic vinaigrette.
Then, in attempt to make the hot dish stuff from Landau, I drizzle some olive oil in a little bake dish, arranged the sliced mozzarella on the bottom, then the tomatoes, sprinkle some romano and basil leaves, I baked it for 10 minutes at 350F.
So when it was all done and melted, we ate all these with the prosciutto and Italian bread.
The baked dish stuff did not come out as I expected, not that I expected it would be a great dish. Never ever use pecorino romano cheese to bake… they were stubborn and would not melt! ha… I thought this were the same as the “romano” cheese I used for the pizza last week… little do I know about cheese!
So, at the end, we were all full and quite happy, and got our belly full of fresh mozzarella cheese and fresh bread from Kroger :)
Oh, no recipe here, they were just basically what they were, straight ingredients and nothing else :) Sprinkle salt and fresh pepper if you would like on your caprese salad… hmm… yummy…. If you have never eaten caprese salad before, try it… the mozzarella to me almost has the consistency of tofu – no taste! :D But the combination of the cheese, basil and tomato had a magic combination… try it, taste it, and let me know!