Traditional Caprese Salad uses tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, basil, olive oil, and salt. But you know I don’t do traditional very often in my kitchen. Instead, we decided to change a few things for an easy, fresh Caprese salad.
What did we change? Quite a few things, actually. Here’s a look at what Wikipedia has to say about fresh Caprese salad:
Caprese salad is a simple Italian salad, made of sliced fresh mozzarella, tomatoes, and sweet basil, seasoned with salt and olive oil, occasionally paired with arugula. It is usually arranged on a plate in restaurant practice. Like pizza Margherita, it features the colours of the Italian flag: green, white, and red. In Italy, it is usually served as an antipasto (starter), not a contorno (side dish) and may be eaten any time of day.https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caprese_salad
Well, we did one thing right, we had this as an appetizer! And we kept the colors true to the traditional green, white, and red. But instead of basil or arugula, we made ours with spinach leaves. We also replaced the olive oil with a balsamic vinaigrette dressing to add a punch of flavor.
We had some cherry tomatoes in the refrigerator leftover from a previous meal. Since they are already small, slicing wouldn’t work.
Well, with small tomatoes we needed small pieces of mozzarella. I love mozzarella cheese, especially in fried mozzarella, so we often have some on hand. Since I hate wasting food, we needed to do something with it. Justin decided that a fresh Caprese salad would be a great snack. So we started making it.
Chopped Caprese salad is perfect when you are entertaining. It’s perfect for individual servings. You can have small cups of it ready to go for your guests, or a large bowl with a spoon so they can serve themselves. This also makes it easier for kids to eat. But, if yours are anything like mine, they will eat around the green and red and go straight for the cheese.
Adding balsamic vinaigrette dressing is a great way to add flavor without overpowering everything else. I’ve had Caprese salad with the vinegar, and it’s very strong. By using the vinaigrette, you get the flavor without the tart.
Step by Step
Slice the cherry tomatoes in half and dice the fresh mozzarella cheese.
Place the tomatoes and mozzarella in a bowl and drizzle with balsamic vinaigrette dressing. Add the chopped spinach and gently stir it together.
Originally Published On: March 13, 2020
Fresh Caprese Salad
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes
- 5 oz mozzarella cheese (fresh)
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinaigrette dressing
- 1/2 cup spinach (shredded)
- Slice the cherry tomatoes in half and dice the fresh mozzarella cheese
- Place the tomatoes and mozzarella in a bowl and drizzle with balsamic vinaigrette dressing
- Add the chopped spinach and gently stir it together
- Caprese salad is best served chilled or immediately after making
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