2 Tbsp olive oil, plus 1 tsp olive oil, divided
1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1/3 cup(s) basil, fresh, chopped
1 cup(s) cherry tomato(es), or grape tomatoes
6 oz whole milk mozzarella cheese, fresh, cut into chunks
3/4 tsp table salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 tsp olive oil
1 small onion(s), chopped
1 cup(s) uncooked jasmine rice (I used white)
In a large serving bowl, combine 2 tablespoons of olive oil, vinegar, basil, tomatoes, mozzarella, salt and pepper. Set aside and allow to marinate while rice cooks.
Heat remaining 1 teaspoon of olive oil in a medium pot over medium heat. Add onion and cook until softened, about 3 minutes. Add rice and 1 3/4 cups water. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer until water is absorbed, about 20 minutes.
Toss rice with tomato mixture; serve warm or at room temperature. Yields about 3/4 heaping cup per serving.
Flavor Booster: Substitute basmati rice for jasmine rice and give this salad a nutty flavor. Rich-tasting hazelnut oil can replace the olive oil, and a light dusting of finely chopped hazelnuts completes the transformation.