Monday, November 25, 2013

Christmas Caprese Salad

Here at Nan’s, one of our favorite summer foods is a Caprese salad, especially the heirloom tomatoes with a balsamic drizzle.  Of course in winter heirloom tomatoes are long gone, but that does not mean the idea of a tomato salad has to go away.  Cherry or Roma tomatoes are plentiful and usually good quality.  Here is a simple and beautiful holiday side dish inspired by the classic Caprese. The red tomatoes and fresh green basil make this holiday salad a stand out on the table. You can prepare the balsamic dressing ahead to save time.

for the salad:

  • 2 pints cherry tomatoes, halved.  Chopped Roma tomatoes will also work.
  • 1 bunch fresh basil, thinly sliced (chiffonade) 
  • 1 pound fresh mozzarella pearls (or fresh mozzarella diced into bite-size pieces)

for the balsamic brown sugar reduction:

In a sauce pan over medium-low heat add the balsamic vinegar and the brown sugar. Cook for 3-5 minutes until bubbly and thick. Once reduced, it should be able to coat the back of a spoon. Allow to cool.

Add the halved tomatoes and fresh mozzarella pearls to a bowl. Before serving, add the fresh basil and drizzle the reduction over the salad.  Toss.

Serves 6 to 8.