Summer on a plate caprese salad

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caprese closeSome things just belong together. Like champagne and caviar, ghee and ginger, summer and tomatoes or tomatoes and mozzarella. I know, I know, I know. Many traditional Ayurvedic cooks don’t use tomatoes. Why? Well because they are part of the nightshade family and, like potatoes and aubergine, can induce or worsten inflammation and allergies. Also, especially for Pitta’s, they are considered heating and sour. Aren’t you glad little miss Soul Foodie here doesn’t mind breaking the rules every once in awhile???

caprese zijkantEspecially with tomatoes this beautiful and in season and a summers day that is so inviting. How could I resist a good old fashioned Caprese Salad? Well, I don’t know about that old fashioned part. Cause my Caprese Salad obviosly had to be one with a twist. So I started off by using tomatoes of different colours and shapes. Green, yellow and red. Plus semi dried ones for extra flavour. I did the same with the mozzarella by not only using the regular sized cheese but also the baby mozzarella called bocconcini, which means little mouthfuls. Don’t you just adore that name! And finally liberally sprinkled over some superb quality black olives and basil leaves.

caprese van bovenBut the biggest chance I made was in the pesto that I topped the salad with. Made from basil, pumpkin seeds, raisins and olive oil. This pesto is lighter because it uses no parmesan cheese or pine nuts and sweeter thanks to the soaked raisins. It may sound weird. But it just tastes divine in combination with the tomatoes. For a more complete meal I served my salad with oven roasted potatoes. But I bet some cooked quinoa would go great with it as well. Give it a try and I guarentee you’ll be licking summer of your plate.

This meal is a once in while summer’s treat for all three Ayurvedic types.

caprese met aardappelenMy Caprese Salad

For 2 -3 for a light lunch

  • 2 firm but ripe red tomatoes (I adore the giant and tasty couer de bouf)
  • 2 green, zebra or chocolate tomatoes
  • 2 yellow tomatoes
  • 2 hand fulls of cherry, pear or mini tomatoes in any colour of your choice
  • 1 ball buffalo mozzarella
  • 1 small tub buffalo bocconcini
  • about 8 semi dried tomatoes (these I find nicer and juicier than the fully dried ones)
  • a small handful of good quality pitted black olives
  • about 8 whole small to medium basil leaves
  • drizzle of olive oil

Pesto

(This amount makes more than you will need for this recipe, but you can keep the pesto for 1 week in a jar in the fridge)

  • 100 gram basil leaves
  • 50 gram pumpkin seeds
  • 30 grams raisins (soaked in warm water for 30 minutes, use without the soaking liquid)
  • 1 clove of garlic (preferably roasted should you have the time)
  • 60 ml olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • himalaya salt and pepper to taste

Make the pesto by pureing all ingredients in a small food processor or by grinding them by hand with a pestle and mortar. Add some extra lemon juice, olive oil and salt and pepper if necessary until your pesto is tasty as hell.

Slice the bigger tomatoes in slices or chuncks. Half the smaller ones. Slice the mozzarella in slices as well but leave the bocconcini whole. Drape the tomato and mozzarella slices on a big platter and cover with the smaller tomatoes, semi dried tomatoes, bocconcini, olives and basil leaves. Drizzle with some olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Drop dollops of the pesto on top of the salad.

Mijn Caprese Salade

Voor 2 -3 personen voor een lichte lunch

  • 2 stevige maar rijpe rode tomaten (ik ben dol op de reuze Couer de bouef variant)
  • 2 groene, chocolade of zebra tomaten
  • 2 gele tomaten
  • 2 handenvol cherry, peer of mini tomaatjes in de kleur van jouw smaak
  • 1 bal buffalo mozzarella
  • 1 klein bakje buffalo bocconcini 
  • ongeveer 8 halfgedroogde tomaten (Ik vind deze lekkerder en sappiger dan volledig gedroogde)
  • een klein handje vol goede kwaliteit zwarte olijven zonder pit
  • ongeveer 8 hele kleine tot medium basilicumblaadjes
  • wat olijfolie

Pesto

(Met deze hoeveelheid maak je meer pesto dan je voor dit recept nodig hebt, maar je kunt het goed afgesloten een week bewaren in de koelkast)

  • 100 gram verse basilicum
  • 50 gram pompoenpitten
  • 30 gram rozijnen (een half uurtje geweekt in warm water, pureer zonder het weekvocht)
  • 1 teen knoflook (liefst geroosterd als je daar tijd voor hebt)
  • 60 ml olijfolie
  • 1 eetlepel citroensap
  • himalayazout en peper naar smaak

Maak de pesto door alle ingrediënten in een kleine keukenmachine te pureren. Voeg zo nodig wat extra citroensap, olijfolie of zout en peper toe tot jij jouw pesto perfect vindt.

Snij de grotere tomaten in plakken of stukken. Halveer de kleintjes. Snij de mozzareela ook in plakjes maar laat de bocconcini heel. Drapeer de tomaten en mozzarellaplakjes op een grote schaal en doe hier de kleinere tomaten, half gedroogede tomaten, bocconcini, olijven en basilicumblaadjes over. Besprenkel met wat olijfolie en breng op smaak met zout en peper. Schep eetlepels vol van de pesto over de salade.

 

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