Monday, December 12, 2011

Mediterranean Salad

I haven't been cooking anything very exciting lately since I've been pretty busy, but I had some friends over for brunch last weekend and I thought I'd share this salad I concocted for the occasion. It isn't terribly seasonal, but it is delicious, and *gasp* vegetarian. I thought I might never post any vegetarian recipes on this blog, but I guess the time has come. 

Overall, this is ridiculously simple. I had some bocconcini in my fridge and wasn't sure what to do with them, but my first thought was Caprese salad. That didn't seem all that interesting so I added whatever other Mediterranean ingredients I could think of to get a wider range of flavors and textures. Over all I used 

3 cups of bocconicini, halved
2 pints of cherry tomatoes, halved (I used about one pint red and one pint heirloom variety)
1 cucumber, peeled and diced
1 can of artichoke hearts packed in water, drained and halved
1/2 cup Kalamata olives, halved

I dressed the salad with the juice of two lemons mixed with about 1/2 cup of olive oil, salt, pepper, cumin, cayenne, and about 2 tablespoons of fresh chopped basil. 

This salad is great leftover. After serving it for brunch on Saturday my husband and I ate it as a side with steak that night, and I've had it for lunch today and yesterday. For lunches I served it over some baby spinach, as pictured above.

I've never been crazy about olives, but I'm glad I put them in here. They add a nice salty kick and I think they are something I could definitely learn to like in small doses. Hopefully I can get back into the swing of cooking for a little while, but I don't know how hopeful to be. We are going on vacation in less than two weeks and for some reason travel always sucks away my ambition. We will see. 

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