I did a tiny tiny favor for a friend the other day, and in return she took me to lunch! (I got the better end of this deal!). I ordered a caprese salad. It was delicious. Days later I was still thinking about that salad. So...I re-created it at home!
For the salad you need: Red Leaf Lettuce, Mozzarella slices, Tomato slices, Balsamic reduction & Walnut Pesto (recipe to follow)
The first thing I did was put about a cup of Balsamic Vinegar in a small pan on the stove. Bring it to a boil and then reduce the heat to simmer. Let it simmer until you only have about 1/2 a cup left. (If you were doing 2 cups, you would reduce it by half to 1 cup). Remove from heat and let cool. This will make the vinegar thicker and sweeter. Delicious.
Next, you make your pesto. Usually pesto is made with pine nuts, which is really good. The best pesto I ever had was at a place in Salt Lake City and it was a walnut pesto, so I thought I'd try it out. I was not disappointed!
To assemble the salad I chopped up some lettuce and added it to one side of the plate. Then I laid a few pieces of mozzarella next to it.
With a spoon, spread some of the walnut pesto over the cheese slices.
Add some tomato slices to the top. Sprinkle some salt & pepper. (I can't wait to make this again when my mom has tomato's in her garden...and I take some for myself!)
Lastly, spoon some of that yummy balsamic reduction over the top of the tomato's and lettuce.
And then inhaled the whole thing!
(At the restaurant they had a balsamic dressing to go with it, but when I was eating it, I wished I had more of the reduction instead. So, I didn't bother with another dressing at home. It has plenty of flavor without an additional dressing.)