It’s summer time! We’ve eaten outside almost every night of the past week. A few days ago, we met some friends for an evening swim and pool-side picnic dinner. I wanted to bring something summery but easy to eat, too. So, I came up with Caprese salad – but on skewers.
Even my toddler ate it. (See my note at the bottom about how to make these more kid-friendly).
Caprese Skewer Ingredients
1 large log of mozzarella cheese (or 2 mozzarella balls)* – don’t buy low fat
1 clamshell of rinsed cherry tomatoes, organic is preferable
about 30 leaves of basil, rinsed
1 quarter of lemon
2 cloves of garlic, peeled
drizzle of extra virgin olive oil
1 cup of balsamic vinegar**
*I had about 1/4 log of cheese leftover; I kept it in the marinade, stored in the fridge, and used it in an omelette a couple days later. It’s awesome on pretty much anything.
**If you just want a little drizzle of vinegar reduction, cut back to 1/2 c. vinegar. If you use 1 full cup and have leftovers, refrigerate them and use on salads or a glaze for salmon.
1. Bring the vinegar to a low boil, then reduce heat to a full simmer. Your kitchen will smell a little acidic – that’s okay. Keep simmering until the vinegar reduces by about half – this took me about 30 minutes. Remove from heat and cool. The reduction thickens significantly when it’s cooled.
2. Cut the mozzarella into 1″ slices, then quarter each slice.
3. Place the mozzarella into a bowl. Drizzle with olive oil and the juice from your lemon wedge.
4. With the flat side of a knife, smash the garlic and bruise about 10 basil leaves.
5. Gently toss the garlic and basil into the mozzarella. Let it marinate for about 30 minutes – don’t do much more than that or the cheese will become too soft for skewering.
6. Skewer a tomato, a leaf of basil (from the remaining 20 or so leaves), and a mozzarella chunk. Follow with another tomato. Repeat until you’re out of tomatoes.
7. Drizzle the vinegar reduction over the skewers or serve the skewers in small shot glasses with vinegar at the bottom.
If you’re making these for children, be sure to cut the sharp part of the skewer off before serving. I also cut the tomatoes in half.