Grilled Pepper Caprese Salad

First, a very Happy Father’s Day to all who are celebrating! (PSSST! Having a BBQ and need some menu inspiration? LOOK HERE!) Nothing screams “summer” like a beautiful Caprese salad, especially when temperatures soar and spending lots of time in the kitchen is the last thing you want to do.

 
Caprese salads certainly make a beautiful statement just on their own. However, I kicked this one up a notch by adding garden-fresh peppers and cherry (or grape) tomatoes that literally explode with flavor from grilling.

 
A SNAP to MAKE! Just assemble your gorgeously grilled rainbow colored peppers and cherry and/or grape tomatoes along with slices of fresh mozarella on a pretty platter, drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil and a great balsamic vinegar. Tuck in some pretty basil leaves, sprinkle with coarse salt and pepper and you are done! Simple elegance at its BEST!

 
This “twist on the traditional” (and good-for-you) starter would be a beautiful addition to your Father’s Day dinner and all of your summer celebrations!... ENJOY!

 

Grilled Pepper Caprese Salad

Yield: about 4 servings
 
Click HERE for the full recipe, but in the nutshell, here is what you do:
 

Instructions

 
Grilling Peppers: cut tops and bottoms off peppers. With a paring knife, remove seeds and white membranes. Slice each pepper in half lengthwise. Lightly brush inside and outside of peppers with olive oil .

 

 
Prepare grill for medium heat. Place peppers on grill face-down.

 
Grill peppers for about 7 minutes or until nicely charred. Turn peppers over and continue grilling for 5 minutes or until skin is blistered.

 
To easily remove the charred skins, immediately place peppers in paper bag and roll up tightly .

 
Allow to cool, about 10 minutes. Remove peppers from bag. Carefully peel off charred skin. (Use the tip of a paring knife to assist if needed.)

 
Grilling Cherry (or Grape) Tomatoes (*can be done at same time as peppers)
Prepare grill for medium heat. Lightly coat tomatoes with olive oil. Place in a grill pan or basket .

 
Grill tomatoes for about 5 minutes or just until they start to wrinkle and are lightly browned. (any longer and tomatoes will become too soft and collapse) Allow to cool.

 
Salad
Slice Roma and yellow tomatoes into 1/4-inch slices, using the larger slices for the salad. (Save the rest of the tomato for other uses.) *If tomatoes are very juicy, sprinkle lightly with salt and drain on paper towels for 15 minutes.
 
On a large serving platter, arrange grilled peppers and cherry (or grape) tomatoes, Roma and yellow tomatoes and mozzarella slices. Insert sprigs of basil as desired between slices. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Drizzle salad lightly with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Serve immediately .

Grilled Pepper Caprese Salad
 
Nothing screams “summer” like a beautiful Caprese salad, especially when temperatures soar and spending lots of time in the kitchen is the last thing you want to do. Caprese salads certainly make a beautiful statement just on their own. However, I kicked this one up a notch by adding garden-fresh peppers and cherry (or grape) tomatoes that explode with flavor from grilling.
Author:
Serves: about 4
Ingredients
  • Paper lunch bag
  • 4 large bell peppers (mixing red, yellow and orange are so pretty!)
  • 1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes (I used both in a mixture of red and yellow)
  • Olive oil
  • 2 large ripe Roma tomatoes (or other variety)
  • 1 large yellow tomato (if not available, use 2 additional Romas)
  • 1 (8 ounce) log fresh mozzarella cheese, cut into 1/4-inch slices
  • 1 small bunch fresh basil, separated into sprigs
Dressing
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
Instructions
  1. Grilling Peppers: cut tops and bottoms off peppers. With a paring knife, remove seeds and white membranes. Slice each pepper in half lengthwise. Lightly brush inside and outside of peppers with olive oil.
  2. Prepare grill for medium heat. Place peppers on grill face-down. Grill peppers for about 7 minutes or until nicely charred. Turn peppers over and continue grilling for 5 minutes or until they reach desired doneness.
  3. To easily remove the charred skins, immediately place peppers in paper bag and roll up tightly. Allow to cool, about 10 minutes. Remove peppers from bag. Carefully peel off charred skin. (Use the tip of a paring knife to assist if needed.)
  4. Grilling Cherry (or Grape) Tomatoes: lightly coat tomatoes with olive oil. Place in a grill pan or basket. Prepare grill for medium heat. Grill tomatoes for about 5 minutes or just until they start to wrinkle and are lightly browned. (any longer and tomatoes will become too soft and collapse) Allow to cool. (*can be done at same time as peppers)
  5. Assemble Salad: slice Roma and yellow tomatoes into 1/4-inch slices, using the larger slices for the salad. (Save the rest of the tomato for other uses.) If tomatoes are very juicy, drain on paper towels.
  6. On a large serving platter, arrange grilled peppers and cherry (or grape) tomatoes, Roma and yellow tomatoes and mozzarella slices. Insert sprigs of basil as desired between slices. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Drizzle salad lightly with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Serve immediately.
MPM Mini-Bites
Make Ahead and Storage Tips: peppers and cherry (or grape) tomatoes may be grilled up to 2 days ahead. Cover and refrigerate. Salad may be assembled (undressed) up to 4 hours before serving. Cover and refrigerate. Before serving, sprinkle with salt and pepper; drizzle with oil and vinegar.
 

Notes

Grilled peppers and tomatoes are wonderful in salads and sauces and are a great addition to pasta dishes. Consider grilling additional peppers for use in future dishes as they freeze well.
 
Be creative! Caprese salads can be arranged in lines, rings or in any pattern you like.
 
Have fun experimenting with different varieties and sizes of tomatoes. Large yellow tomatoes add a pleasing “pop” of color while heirlooms make an absolutely beautiful presentation.
 
My more traditional Caprese Salad can be found here.

 

Father’s Day Goodies

 

 

 

 

 

 

Coming to the Blog: Sweet ‘n Tangy BBQ Salmon!

 

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1 Response

  1. What a gorgeous salad, Linda, so fresh, colourful and tasty! I love things like your Grilled Pepper Caprese Salad - they are so easy to prepare, but so flavourful and satisfying. Sharing around! Thank you so much for sharing, and for being a part of Hearth and Soul.

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