I have not always been a tomato fan. In fact…This is one of the few ways I will eat a raw tomato, just purely based on the fact that there are too many other things involved that I like to eat. (Other ways include and are limited to: Pico de Gallo.) Traditional Caprese Salad is made with plain basil leaves, but what’s the fun in that, really? All of the following forms you’ll see today have incorporated pesto. Don’t worry, it doesn’t make them hard to make!
For this reason, caprese salad has become our go-to in many ways for entertaining. We’ve eaten it on skewers, where we rolled the cheese in the pesto before assembling:
And we’ve even served a platter of “take whatever combination of cheese and tomatoes you want:
So here’s the secret: pesto is easy. Play around with it, and let it become your own. Sometimes I balance out the spicy taste of the basil with a handful of spinach, or parsley (before it died). Sometimes we have no nuts in the house. Sometimes there are almonds. You can even make it without cheese. Do what you feel here! I even bought balsamic reduction already made (shhh, don’t tell!). This makes for an easy snack, or entertaining food, no matter which way you slice it.
Pesto Caprese Salad: Three Ways
- Fresh basil large amount
- Olive oil good quality
- 2-4 garlic cloves
- Sprinkle of Kosher salt
- ½ C. Parmesan cheese
- Your choice of roasted/toasted nuts optional
- Fresh mozzarella cheese
- Roma tomatoes
- Balsamic reduction
Give basil a good whir in the food processor. Slowly stream in olive oil.
Drop in garlic, salt, nuts and cheese and whir until you are happy with the consistency. Feel free to make it thicker or thinner with the olive oil.
Cut tomatoes to desired shape and size, and arrange with fresh mozzarella.
Top with pesto, extra parmesan cheese, a sprinkle of salt and balsamic reduction!
Please forgive the variation in photo quality! The skewers had the opportunity to have a photoshoot, but the others were gobbled up pretty quickly!
This week’s post has been linked up at Weekend Potluck and Try a Bite Tuesday!