It's the end of August. Hotter than heck and my birthday....
My best friend and I seek out and explore new places to dine every month.
We refer to this activity as the 'Purple Rose Society.' This month she selected an 'old school' type restaurant in Southern California. Sadly, the restaurant closed after 35+ years, but not before I got THIS recipe direct from the sous chef. I have worked in many restaurants and I know it isn't easy to get a recipe from establishments (whether you work there or not.) My friend and I had this amazing salad, and truly it is beyond delicious- - regardless of the temperature outside. This is my version of a remarkable Summer Salad. If you eat tomatoes one way this summer, LET IT BE THIS WAY. Happy birthday to me!!! :) —Miss Karen
Fresh buffalo mozzarella ball
Sliced Prosciutto ham, shredded
Firm Heirloom tomatoes, different colors OR 1 golden tomato and 1 Roma tomato
clean fresh baby spinach, stems removed
Toasted pine nuts
freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Dressing: Salt and fresh ground white pepper, to taste
1- 1 1/2 cups
Fresh basil, chopped
Rice wine vinegar
(scant) minced fresh garlic
Salt and fresh ground white pepper, to taste
In This Recipe
Slice the mozzarella ball into ¼ inch slices. Do the same with the tomatoes. Shred or slice the prosciutto into small squares. Layer the following ingredients in a row inside a shallow pie tin; tomato, cheese, prosciutto. Continue until ingredients are used.
Creamy Basil Vinaigrette:
Place the egg, mustard, vinegars and garlic into a blender. SLOWLY add the oil until emulsified. Add the fresh basil, salt and pepper and puree until smooth. If the dressing is too thick you can add a few drops of water until it reaches desired consistency.
Place the pie tin with the layered mozzarella into a 350 F for 3-4 minutes.
In a large bowl toss the spinach with enough dressing to coat the leaves. Place the salad onto a plate.
Use a spatula to place the warm layered mozzarella into the center of the salad. Sprinkle with the pine nuts and Parmesan cheese.
Serve with a good Ciabatta bread and your favorite glass of wine.
Sometimes I add 3-4 quartered artichokes and some sliced Kalamata olives.