Greek Caprese Salad

Salad Bites.jpg
A taste of summer in every bite

In anticipation of the first day of summer, I’d like to share my family’s go-to appetizer. I think it was my grandmother that first served Caprese Salad on mini bamboo skewers. My mom coined the phrase “Salad Bites,” and I’ve been making my Greek version ever since.

When I lived in Athens, I loved walking around our neighborhood Laiki market. There I’d find bright green watermelons, basil, olive oil, and fig preserves to make a fresh and delicious snack. Today, I added soft almond cheese to the salad. To my surprise, it tasted like feta. I think I officially found my favorite summer appetizer.

Greek Caprese Salad Bites


Yield: 4-6 servings         Total Time: 10 minutes


Ingredients:

Salad:
1 seedless watermelon
4 oz. plain soft artisan nut cheese*
Fresh basil
Sea salt and ground pepper
Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)

Fig Balsamic Reduction:
¼ cup fig jam
½ cup balsamic vinegar.

Directions:

  1. Place ¼ cup of fig jam and ½ cup of balsamic vinegar in a pot. Simmer and stir over medium heat until the sauce thickens, usually about 10 minutes.**
  2. Meanwhile, rinse and slice the watermelon in half. Using a melon baller, scoop the watermelon into balls. On the bamboo pick, add a small basil leaf, a square of cheese, and the watermelon. Set the mini skewers on a serving platter and refrigerate the remaining watermelon for a snack.
  3. Sprinkle freshly ground pepper and a pinch of coarse sea salt on the salad bites.
  4. Drizzle the fig balsamic reduction and EVOO over the salad bites or serve on the side of the platter. Enjoy!

 

Tips:

*I used Kite Hill’s soft fresh original cheese. Heidi-Ho makes a Ne Chèvre – Pure cashew cheese that would also pair well with this salad. If you find other nut based soft cheeses that you enjoy, please let me know.

** You can make the Fig Balsamic reduction the day before. It keeps in the refrigerator for several weeks.

 

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