Caprese Salad

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It has been raining all week here in Northern Colorado, but the weather is supposed to make a change for the better – just in time for the holiday weekend!  The nights and mornings are much more crisp, fall is totally in the air!  I love fall but am not really looking forward to the snow and the lack of summer produce like the wonderful tomatoes and basil used in this salad.  (the bowl & spoon are from Greece, how cool is that!  My husband’s parents brought it back for us several years ago.  Greece is on my list of places to visit…hopefully soon!)

This salad can either be layered in rows – tomato, cheese, basil – or mixed up like it is here.

caprese salad (9) WM

serves 4

time: quick, about 5 minutes unless you cut really slowly



1 tomato (or half & half of red & orange, or whatever colors – you can also use cherry tomatoes)

handful of basil, torn up

buffalo mozzarella (the kind in water, though regular mozzarella will work too but it’s not as good)

balsamic vinegar

olive oil


Lawry’s season salt



1) Cut the tomatoes up into bite sized pieces, tear the basil up, cut the buffalo mozzarella into bite sized pieces (if you are doing the layering method slice the tomato & mozzarella into circles) and place is a shallow bowl.

2) Stir up the balsamic vinegar & olive oil, about 3 teaspoons of olive oil and 1-2 teaspoons of balsamic vinegar.  Sprinkle in the pepper & Lawry’s season salt to taste. Pour the vinaigrette onto the tomatoes, basil and cheese – gently mix in the vinaigrette.


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Artichoke & Asparagus Chicken Skewers

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My husband and I really, really, really liked this dish!  We made it a second time with a pork tenderloin for a friend that can’t eat chicken and it’s equally as yummy!  The lemon herb vinaigrette is a little over kill / way too much oil for this dish so we skipped it the second time – I would highly recommend doing that.  The asparagus  that we get here in Colorado are way too skinny to put on the wood kabob stick, so I simply put them in the bag of marinade after I took the chicken / pork out of the bag, rolled the asparagus around a bit to coat them and then grilled them separately.

Serves: 4

Time: Refrigerate overnight, then 1 hour, approximately

Moroccan Chicken
1 1/2 – 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken, cut into bite size pieces
2 cloves garlic
1 inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and chopped
1/2 -1 teaspoon cayenne pepper)
2 tablespoons fresh cilantro
2 tablespoons fresh parsley
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
1/2 tablespoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1/2 cup olive oil
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Lemon Herb vinaigrette

2 small to medium lemons, grated + juiced
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
1 tablespoon salt
1 teaspoon honey
1/2 a lime, juiced


Minted Goat Cheese Yogurt
1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
2 tablespoons fresh mint, chopped
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 lemon, juiced
salt and pepper, to taste
3 ounces soft goat cheese
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Kabob Veggies
1 (6 ounce) jar marinated artichoke hearts
1 bunch asparagus
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1) Add the ingredients for the chicken marinade to a food processor and blend until smooth, add to a gallon sized zip-lock bag with the chicken pieces and massage the marinade over the chicken.  Refrigerate overnight.
2) The day of:  Mix all of the ingredients of the minted goat cheese yogurt together, cover and set aside in the refrigerator until ready to eat.
3) Pour the lemon juice and add the lemon zest into a small sauce pan over low heat; bring to a simmer and simmer for about 1 minute or until the zest absorbs the juice.  You do not want the zest burn and get stuck to the pan.  Add this mixture to the olive oil, parsley, salt, honey and lime juice. Whisk to combine and set aside.
4) Get the coals of your BBQ ready. Soak the wood kabob skewers for about 5 minutes.
5) Thread the chicken and artichoke hearts on the wood kabob artichoke .  Place the asparagus in the bag of marinade and move around to coat.  Place the chicken/artichoke kabob artichoke plus asparagus on the grill and grill until the chicken is cooked through and the asparagus are tender but aren’t overcooked.
6) Serve the chicken with the the lemon herb vinaigrette, the minted goat cheese yogurt and couscous on the side.


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