Caprese Salad with Avocados and Italian Salsa

 

This beautiful appetizer is a real crowd pleaser.

And why wouldn’t it be? The Caprese Salad with Avocados and Italian Salsa Fresh is made beautiful ripe tomatoes, soft mozzarella, and heart healthy avocados, all drizzled with organic olive oil and aged balsamic vinegar served atop crispy pita chips! 

Caprese and Avocado Appetizer

 

This Caprese Salad takes a little twist on the traditional Italian version. Instead of sliced tomatoes, we dice ours to make a salsa. Our “Italian Salsa” has some traditional salsa ingredients like tomatoes and onion, but because it’s an Italian we add some basil and garlic!

Caprese and Avocado AppetizerTo chiffonade basil simply stack several basil leaves, roll lengthwise, then thinly slice! 

Caprese and Avocado Appetizer

When there are so few ingredients in a recipe it is important to use the best! I always use a high quality olive oil and 25 Year Aged Balsamic Vinegar from BR Cohn Winery for this appetizer!

 Caprese and Avocado Appetizer

How to slice fresh mozzarella and avocado:

Fresh mozzarella packed in water can be a little tricky to slice because it is so soft. I use a serrated knife, but dental floss also works really well. To slice an avocado follow these directions and photos.

Use a knife to cut around the seed, cutting the avocado in half, then twist the avocado to separate. Gently but firmly ‘tap’ the seed with knife, then twist and lift seed out, like so…

Caprese and Avocado Appetizer Next, place the avocado (skin side up) on the cutting board and slice through the skin. Gently peel skin off avocado slices.

Caprese and Avocado Appetizer

Serving Variations:

Sometimes I put the salsa on a bowl in the center of a plate and arrange the avocado and mozzarella slices in a circle  around the bowl. Either way it is a beautiful and tasty appetizer.

Caprese and Avocado Appetizer

The Recipe: Caprese Salad with Avocado and Italian Salsa

Tips and what you will need: Using high quality olive oil and 25 Year Aged Balsamic Vinegar are a must! I love Maldon Flaked sea salt. A microplane makes grating Parmesan a dream. You will also need a good knife. I use a 8″ Wusthof chef’s knife. To see a video on how to easily chop an onion click here, and to see how to get the smell of garlic off your hands, click here.

Caprese Salad with Avocados and Italian Salsa
 
Recipe Type: appetizer
Cuisine: Italian
Author: Linda Spiker
Prep time:
Total time:
Serves: 12
A delicious appetizer that puts a twist on the usual Caprese Salad
Ingredients
  • [b]ITALIAN SALSA:[/b]
  • 4 tomatoes, diced (set on a paper towel to absorb extra juices)
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • ¼ of a red onion finely diced
  • 1 T olive oil
  • Fresh basil, chopped (to taste)
  • ¼ Cup Parmesan cheese, finely grated
  • Pinch of freshly ground pepper
  • Pinch of fresh sea salt
  • ¼ cup roasted Pine Nuts (optional)
  • Crispy pitas
  • [b]CAPRESE SALAD:[/b]
  • 3-4 large oval shaped fresh mozzarella cheese (packed in water)
  • 3-4 firm but ripe avocados
  • olive oil
  • good balsamic vinegar
Instructions
  1. [b]Italian Salsa:[/b]
  2. Cut your tomatoes in half and scoop out seeds. Dice tomatoes. Place tomatoes in bowl and add onions, garlic, salt, pepper, basil and roasted pine nuts. Drizzle a little olive oil over mixture and stir. Add Parmesan just before serving.
  3. [b]Caprese Salad:[/b]
  4. Arrange the crispy pita, the Italian salsa and the cheese and avocados in three rows on a rectangular platter. Place alternating cheese slice, avocado slice, cheese slice, avocado slice etc) till cheese and avocado line the bottom 1/3 of the platter. Then place the tomato mixture in the middle row of platter and the crispy pitas across the top of platter. Sprinkle avocado and cheese with sea salt and pepper then drizzle avocado and cheese with Olive Oil and balsamic. Serve.
 

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