My father would call these sandwiches for "ladies who lunch", and in fact, I first encountered them at a luncheon gathering of women friends.
One can't really go wrong with lightly toasted flatbread and an insalata Caprese filling of tomatoes, fresh Mozzarella, and basil. The original recipe comes from a friend's Pampered Chef recipe; the following, my adaptation.
Caprese Mini Sandwiches
- 4 Middle Eastern flatbread (pita bread rounds without pockets)
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup (1 ounce) coarsely grated fresh Parmesan cheese
- 1/4 teaspoon mixed dried Italian seasoning herbs (basil, oregano, marjoram)
- 1/2 cup lightly packed fresh basil leaves, finely chopped
- 1/4 cup toasted walnuts, finely chopped
- 1 garlic clove, pressed or finely minced
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons vinaigrette or light balsamic salad dressing
- 2 cups mixed baby salad greens or spinach leaves
- 2-3 balls fresh mozzarella cheese, sliced (about 8 ounces)
- 2 large plum tomatoes, sliced
Sprinkle flatbread with Parmesan and toast in the oven:
Preheat oven to 425oF. Place flatbread rounds on a pizza stone or baking pan; drizzle with oil, spreading evenly.
Sprinkle evenly with Parmesan cheese and seasoning mix. Bake 8-10 minutes or until edges are light golden brown and cheese is melted.
Make pesto with walnuts, basil, garlic, salt:
While the flatbread is toasting, create a light pesto by mixing together in a small bowl the walnuts, fresh basil, garlic and salt.
Assemble the sandwiches:
Remove flatbread from the oven to a cutting board. Turn the pieces over. Drizzle with dressing, spreading evenly to the edges.
Using a sharp chef's knife, cut each round into six wedges. Top each wedge with a small amount of the greens. Place one slice of mozzarella cheese over greens; top with pesto and one slice of tomato.
Top with remaining pita wedges, cheese side up forming 12 mini sandwiches. Serve immediately.