LOADED CAPRESE SALAD
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This loaded caprese salad celebrates some of the best produce summer has to offer. Perfect for balmy summer evenings.

Loaded caprese salad with roasted eggplant, croutons and basil pesto dressing.

The combination of juicy peak season tomatoes with creamy eggplant, fresh bocconcini, crunchy croutons and basil pesto dressing is so delish!

It’s a fresh, flavoursome meal that won’t weigh you down.

For heartier appetites, you could barbecue some sausages or chicken tenderloins and serve with the salad.

Let me know what you think!

 

PRINT RECIPE PDF
Loaded caprese salad with roasted eggplant, croutons and basil pesto dressing.

LOADED CAPRESE SALAD

Keyword: MAIN MEALS, VEGETARIAN
Difficulty: Easy
Ready In: 30 minutes
Serves: 4

This loaded caprese salad celebrates some of the best produce summer has to offer. It’s fresh, flavoursome, and won’t weigh you down. Perfect for balmy summer evenings.

QUICK PRINT

Ingredients

DRESSING

  • 1/2 cup packed fresh basil leaves (15g)
  • 1/3 cup grated parmesan (30g)
  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp white balsamic vinegar or apple cider vinegar

SALAD

  • 1 large eggplant
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil, divided
  • 1/2 loaf ciabatta or sourdough bread
  • 2 Tbsp sunflower seeds
  • 400 g fresh tomatoes (ideally a mixture of colours and sizes) (14oz)
  • 125 g cherry bocconcini (4.4oz)
  • 60 g baby spinach (2.1oz)

TO SERVE

  • 1 large handful fresh basil leaves

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 190ºC (375ºF) fan bake and line two large oven trays with baking paper.

  2. MAKE DRESSING

    Place basil, parmesan, oil and vinegar in a small food processor or blender. Process to form a thick dressing (you can add a little water if it is too thick). Season to taste with salt and pepper.

  3. PREPARE SALAD

    Dice eggplant into 1-2cm / 0.5in pieces. Place on one of the prepared trays, drizzle with 1 tablespoon oil, season with salt and pepper and toss to combine. Arrange in a single layer and roast for 8 minutes.

  4. Meanwhile, tear bread into crouton-sized pieces and place on the second tray. Drizzle with remaining tablespoon oil and season with a little salt and pepper. Toss to combine. Scatter seeds over the top.

  5. When eggplant has baked for 8 minutes, add the tray of bread (place below the eggplant) and bake for a further 7 minutes, until eggplant is golden and bread and seeds are lightly toasted.

  6. Slice tomatoes and tear bocconcini in half.

  7. SERVE

    Divide spinach between individual serving plates. Top with tomatoes and eggplant. Add bocconcini, bread and seeds and drizzle all over with dressing. Scatter basil leaves on top.

Recipe Notes

WINE MATCH: A Rosé.
GLUTEN-FREE OPTION: Use gluten-free bread.
INGREDIENT SWAPS / NOTES: If you don’t like eggplant, 250g / 8.8oz portobello mushrooms (diced) would be a good alternative. Bocconcini could be replaced with diced feta cheese.
BULK IT UP: Fancy some meat? Barbecue some good quality sausages or chicken tenderloins and serve with the salad.
STORING AND REHEATING: Spinach, basil, tomato and bocconcini can be stored together. Keep bread in an airtight container. Warm eggplant in the microwave. Add eggplant, bread, seeds and dressing to salad just before serving.

 

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