I have been totally strawberry-obsessed lately. I've been putting them into my morning smoothies, eating them as snacks, adding them to salads, cocktails making muffins (recipes coming soon!).... basically trying my best to incorporate them into every meal. And we're going strawberry picking in the next few weeks as well - the obsession will most definitely continue.
With the weather being so absolutely gorgeous lately, I've been thinking of and craving so many summery foods. Caprese salad is definitely one of my favorite lunches to eat during the summer, yet sadly tomatoes aren't really in season yet. Cherry and grape tomatoes are reasonable during this time of year though, so I improvised and used those. And given the strawberry obsession, I thought "why not?" and threw some of those in there too.
This salad was really delicious. The sweetness of the strawberries was perfect with the creamy mozzarella, and the tomatoes and basil were a wonderfully fresh counterpart. The flavors were familiar, but the strawberries made it special. I drizzled the whole thing with a balsamic reduction (another recent obsession), and it was really elevated to the next level. And now I'm really dying to make a dessert with strawberries and balsamic vinegar. It was my first time trying that combo, and I want more!
When food is this gorgeous and fresh, you don't have to do much to it. Keep it simple and let the food speak for itself. I served this alongside mushroom-pesto paninis, and it was a perfect spring meal. Healthy, fresh, and flavorful. I could eat like this all year-round.
Strawberry Caprese Salad
a Pink Parsley Original
- 1 cup halved grape tomatoes
- 1/4 tsp kosher salt
- pinch of sugar
- 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1 Tbs olive oil
- 1 Tbs honey
- squeeze of fresh lemon juice
- 1 cup hulled and quartered strawberries
- 1/2 cup diced fresh mozzarella cheese
- 4-5 basil leaves
Toss the tomatoes with the salt and sugar in a colander, and allow to drain for 10-15 minutes to remove excess water.
Meanwhile, bring the vinegar to a boil in a small saucepan. Cook until it is thick and syrupy, and has reduced to just a few tablespoons, five to ten minutes. Remove from heat and pour into a small bowl to cool.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the olive oil, honey, and lemon juice. Season with a pinch of salt. Toss with the tomatoes, strawberries, mozzarella, and basil. Before serving, drizzle each serving with some of the balsamic vinegar (a little goes a long way, so you definitely won't use all of it)