chopped caprese summer salad

one of my lifelong friends {and her hubby} came over for lunch on sunday.
i know that caprese salad is one of her very favorite dishes and wanted to serve that with our meal...
the thing is, i didn't want to have to be constantly getting up, making more... 
{slicing more tomatoes, more mozz, snipping basil, etc}...
and the typical slice of tomato/slice of fresh mozzarella/basil leaf/drizzle of balsamic 
presentation of caprese salad isn't particularly kid-friendly.
on saturday, i came up with this idea for a chopped version of the classic caprese salad, 
bought all the ingredients, crossed my fingers and hoped it would work.

and did it ever work!!!
this salad turned out to be delicious!

this salad does require a bit of prep work...mainly chopping.
also, the balsamic reduction should be made several hours beforehand {or perhaps even the night before}, so that it can be completely chilled.   
i stood at the counter and did my cutting, chatting with my friend, since i wanted to serve the salad very fresh, so that the tomatoes and basil would still be firm and crisp.
i have to say, i'm glad i served the salad fresh...however, we had plenty left over and when i ate the slightly wilted version for lunch today, i didn't mind it one little bit.
chopped caprese summer salad
3-4 pints grape tomatoes {or 5-ish cups chopped fresh tomatoes}
8oz. fresh mozzarella, diced small
4-5 scallions, thinly sliced, white and green parts {optional}
1-1½ cups fresh basil
*4-6oz balsamic reduction {or store-bought balsamic glaze, if you're in a hurry☺}

*{to make balsamic reduction, pour 1 cup balsamic vinegar (inexpensive, generic balsamic actually works well for this!) and 2 tablespoons honey into small sauce pan.  bring to a simmer over medium-high heat.  turn heat down and continue to simmer for 15-20 minutes...or until thickened and reduced.  you should end up with approximately ½ - ⅔ cup of syrup-like vinegar reduction. (keep in mind, it thickens significantly as it cools.)}

for the salad:
if using grape tomatoes, cut them in half.  spread a thick layer over your serving tray.
sprinkle diced fresh mozz over top of tomatoes.
the scallions are optional {definitely not traditional, but then again, balsamic isn't traditional for caprese, either.  nope.  it's not.  google it.  olive oil is the traditional caprese dressing.  go fig.}...
anywhoo, the scallions are optional but recommended {if you like onions, of course}.  i like the bite of the green onions with the sweetness of the tomatoes and mozzarella.
grab several large leaves of basil and snip with kitchen scissors, evenly distributing over the entire dish.  
and then, cut up more.  and more.  and more.  never.enough.basil. mmmmmmm....
for the finale, drizzle your chilled balsamic reduction over all.  
serve immediately.

1 comment:

  1. this is perfect!! I am soooo going to do this with some of out basil this weekend.


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