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The Fuyu persimmon that chef Helene Henderson uses in this beautiful salad is light orange and shaped like a tomato; don’t confuse it with the Hachiya variety, which is a deeper orange, heart-shaped and only edible when very soft to the touch. When she can’t find good persimmons, Henderson makes the salad with other seasonal fruit, like nectarines.

This dish is a take on the classic Italian mozzarella-tomato-basil Caprese salad. It depends on young, very fresh zucchini and summer squash. To get the right consistency, grate the olives finely with a Microplane grater instead of pureeing them.

These light and cheesy fried potato croquettes are breaded twice: They’re dredged in bread crumbs, dipped in beaten eggs seasoned with mustard and garlic, then dredged in bread crumbs once more. The payoff is a supercrisp, flavorful crust for the filling of soft mashed potato and melted cheese.

This Italian flatbread sandwich is stuffed with warm mozzarella cheese, arugula and thinly sliced prosciutto.

This summery sandwich benefits from a generous topping of olivada made with tangy green olives, lemon and oil. It’s great with the creamy mozzarella and the lightly smoky grilled-zucchini slices here; it’s also wonderful with grilled fish and shellfish and roasted meat and chicken.

Chef Andy Glover used smoked pork in this dish, but prosciutto is also tasty.

Suggested wine pairing: Fruit-forward Pinot Gris.

Jacques Pépin makes quick pizzas with pita bread, lavash or flour tortillas, like this simple mozzarella and tomato pie.

Fresh mozzarella melts lightly on the just-grilled asparagus spears; lemon vinaigrette adds bite.

Burrata cheese (a decadent, creamy type of mozzarella) and glazed beets make a brilliant topping for these toasts.

Adam Erace uses soppressata to top this clever prebaked-crust pizza, along with mashed sweet potatoes and mozzarella cheese.

In this play on the classic Italian salad, Grace Parisi kneads basil pesto into ground beef before grilling, then tops the burgers with mozzarella, sliced tomatoes and even more pesto.

Here’s a true crowd pleaser: pasta shells in a simple sauce of ground beef, tomatoes, and pesto, layered with mozzarella and Parmesan and baked until bubbly. Fusilli or orecchiette would work well here, too.

Call it an adult version of the grilled-cheese sandwich—slices of country bread layered with mozzarella, goat cheese, and tomato-sauced spinach and toasted to a golden brown.

Bocconcini (mini mozzarella balls) are often sold floating in herbed olive oil. That tasty oil is essential to this three-ingredient recipe because it adds so much flavor to both the chicken marinade and the dressing.

This half-pizza, half-calzone is named for Italy’s Mount Vesuvius.

“My Calabrian grandmother always used plain white rice to make her incredible arancini (rice balls),” says Grace Parisi, “but I prefer to cook with plump arborio because I think it makes the insides creamier.”

Nancy Silverton's antipasto salad features shredded lettuce, salami and zesty green olive tapenade mixed with petite mozzarella balls (bocconcini).

For this streamlined version of Fabio Trabocchi’s luxe lasagna in bianco (white lasagna), he layers flat noodles with a supremely rich sauce, along with a root-vegetable ragù, fresh mozzarella and whole basil leaves.

Michelle Berstein makes mini arepas, or arepitas, to serve as canapés, adding cheese and chorizo to the dough. They're her answer to the corn dog.

This Vietnamese Caprese is a multiculti mash-up of the Italian trinity of tomato, basil and mozzarella with Asian rice noodles and Vietnamese-style meatballs.

Chef Bryan Vietmeier merges two Italian-American favorites here: chicken parm and pepperoni.

Buffalo mozzarella, traditionally made from the milk of water buffalo, has an exquisite tangy edge. Shea Gallante ingeniously turns the cheese into a soup, liquefying it in a blender with the water it comes packed in and some fruity olive oil.

This delicious homemade pizza is topped with meaty portobello mushrooms, creamy mozzarella cheese, sweet red peppers and fresh basil. It serves two to four people.

These open-faced sandwiches with crisp asparagus, prosciutto and three layers of melted cheese are gooey and crunchy.

The delicious dressing for this salad comes from the juices that form while the cucumber macerates with the other ingredients.


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