Mozzarella, tomato and celery salad

Everybody is familiar with the caprese salad, the perfect combination of tomato and mozzarella, or mozzarella and roasted peppers. Mozzarella, tomato and celery salad, instead, is made with celery and it’s a fresh and tasty alternative, especially if you like celery but you don’t know how to properly use it. Has anyone in the history of cooking ever used up an entire bunch of celery before it spoils? Even considering how long it lasts (weeks!), we almost always end up with a sad, wilted collection of stalks that we throw away and replace with a fresh bunch every month or so. Celery is an under-used vegetable, is what I’m saying. Yet it’s one that we pretty much always have in the fridge — to flavor a soup or a stew, to make stock, or to chop up for a garden salad. Here’s my mozzarella, tomato and celery salad, I hope you will like it, especially in the summer I find it lovely.

INGREDIENTSmozzarella, tomato and celery salad
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 pound fresh mozzarella, cubed
6-7 cherry tomatoes
2 cups celery thinly sliced on the bias, with some leaves

DIRECTIONS
In a serving bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, mustard, and salt. Then slowly whisk in the olive oil to make a smooth dressing. Add the mozzarella, cherry tomatoes, and celery. Toss well with the dressing, and serve your mozzarella, tomato and celery salad. Or you can plate a more formal version with fanned, sliced mozzarella and the dressed celery and tomatoes on top.

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