Monday, May 3, 2010

Heirloom Tomato, Bocconcini & Basil Spinach Salad with Balsamic Reduction (Insalata Caprese)

I think this one takes the prize for longest title. Some fancier foodies/chefs/bloggers would call it Caprese Salad but it doesn't quite have the same ring to it as HTBBSS. It also takes the prize for quickest, tastiest and most gourmet lunch ever.

There is no recipe for this salad. I sliced some fresh heirloom tomatoes (pretty orange & yellow striped ones), tore up some fresh basil leaves, threw some spinach on the plate, topped it all with some baby bocconcini pieces, sprinkled it all with course salt and fresh cracked pepper and drizzled on a generous amount of reduced balsamic vinegar and extra virgin olive oil. Delicious!

I've been making this salad for quite a while. It was inspired by a similar one I had at a local Irish Pub once. Normally I make my own balsamic reduction by simply simmering one cup of balsamic vinegar until it's been reduced by half. It's easy to do but it takes a while and smells up the kitchen.

Yesterday I went to the 18th Annual Vancouver Wellness Show and bought a bottle of Nonna Pia's Gourmet Classic Balsamic Reduction. It's produced and bottled in Whistler. It feels right to support a local, family run business. And it's a good product; a really, really good product. Saves time and no smelly kitchen!

Speaking of local eating, this month marks the opening of many community farmers markets. If you're in the Coquitlam area check here. Vancouver? Look here. Other cities across the province of BC? Check this one.

I will post more in depth about farmers markets and what it means to be "local", another day.

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