One of my favorite memories of summer is sitting in my parents backyard and enjoying a nice dinner outside. My Dad grows basil, tomatoes, peppers, blackberries, and raspberries every summer in his garden. I love sinking my teeth into fresh produce! You just can’t beat the fresh, juicy, and bursting flavors of eating local seasonal food.
With having an Italian background, one of our favorites is making caprese salad with fresh tomatoes, basil, and mozzarella cheese. I usually drizzle balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper right before serving. Honestly, one of my favorite summer side dishes that inspired me to create this salad. I opted to use cauliflower rice instead of brown rice for a lower carb swap and made a yummy mascarpone dressing. If you’ve never tried mascarpone cheese please add this to your list! It’s creamy, great in pasta, baked goods, and even on a piece of toast! So let’s get cooking!
- 1 container of cherry tomatoes, sliced
- 1 zucchini, sliced
- 1/2 of an 8 oz container of mozzarella pearls
- 1/3 cup fresh basil
- 1/2 cup kalamata olives
- Fresh arugula (or your greens of choice)
- 4 cups riced cauliflower
- 1 block of tempeh, diced
- Balsamic vinegar
Creamy basil dressing: 1/4 cup mascarpone cheese + juice of 1 lemon + 1 tbsp olive oil + 1/4 cup fresh basil + salt/pepper. Blend all ingredients until smooth in a food processor. I added about 3 tbsp if water to thin.
I sautéed the tempeh in olive oil and added about 2-3 tbsp of balsamic vinegar until coated. Then I plated up this gorgeous and fresh tasting salad! Started with arugula, then cauliflower rice, added the tomato, mozzarella, zucchini and olive mixture.