Wednesday, August 13, 2014

A Kicked Up Caprese Salad

Here is a different take on the typical caprese salad.  Another good way to use your fresh basil and tomatoes.
 Make a basic pesto.  I used about 5 cups of basil, 1/3 C. pine nuts, S & P, 1/2 C. parmesan cheese and 2 cloves of garlic.

 Slowly add about 3/4 C. of olive oil.

 I packed it in snack bags and froze it. Save some of the pesto for the salad.

 For this salad, I made an additional dressing.  This is a bacon dressing which would be very good on a spinach salad too.  Pan roast some garlic cloves.  This takes the bite out of the garlic.

¾ lb. bacon, diced and crisped, fat reserved
½ cup chopped celery
½ cup honey
½ cup rice vinegar
½ cup sliced shallots
¼ cup roasted garlic
1¼ tbsp. lemon juice
½ tbsp. dijon mustard
¼ cup canola oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Place this in your food processor, add the roasted garlic with it's oil and pulse until you have a smooth dressing.

 Another food that matches my counter.

 Slice a ball of fresh mozzarella, some good tomatoes, red onion and cucumbers. Drizzle some pesto down the center of it and some of the bacon dressing on top of all of that.  I also drizzled some balsamic glaze around the outside.  This salad is so good that the room was totally silent while everyone was eating.