Mozzarella, Balsamic, Cucumber, Tomato & Basil Salad

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A mozzarella, balsamic, cucumber, tomato, and basil salad will have the whole family salivating for more. Make a mozzarella, balsamic, cucumber, tomato and basil salad with help from a true culinary adventurer in this free video clip.

Part of the Video Series: Tomato Salads & Other Recipes
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Hello, everyone, this is Chef Rachelle Boucher, with Standards of Excellence, Westar Kitchen and Bath and Florida Builder Appliances. I would love to show you my version of a mozzarella, tomato, cucumber, basil and balsamic salad. I'm gonna stack it high, and I think you'll love the presentation. So first I'm gonna prepare the cucumber, and you can partially peel it like this if you'd like. You can peel it all the way, it's up to you. I like a little bit of green. And then what I'll do is I'm gonna split this in half, and I'm gonna seed it. And my favorite way of seeding it is using a spoon, just goes in nice and smooth, and you don't need to do this step, but I prefer it. So we're gonna seed that. And with both the cucumber and the onion, I'm gonna show you another step, which will help make this a little more palatable. So I'm just gonna slice these really thin. We'll do a whole bunch like that, and then with the red onion, same thing, I'm just going to get really nice, thin slices, beautiful. And then, I'll show you how to cure those slightly for this salad. So I like to salt the cucumbers and the onions just a little bit. So I've taken fresh cucumber and onion, nicely slivered, just sprinkling with a little bit of salt, and I let it sit for about 10 minutes. I'm gonna then, this has been rinsed after that, and now I'm just going to take it and just put it into this paper towel lined bowl. And this gives you just a really tender cucumber, and it takes away some of the harsh flavor of the onion, and I'm gonna use this as a bed for our salad. So I've picked a tomato, kind of a medium size, and I've got a great serrated knife. I'm just gonna cut through, and just get nice slices. My fingers are in a claw, so I'm not cutting the ends of my fingers. And just slicing right through all the way to the bottom, And even this last one, just trim the bottom off of that. Okay? Then, we'll move over to the mozzarella. Get that out of the way. Now you could use the large mozzarella, I like the very tender, fresh mozzarella, which is in the brine. Drain that, just lift it out. I have some larger pieces, but these are also really nice, this sort of a tear drop little shape, and that can make a fun garnish. So large or small, I use the fresh mozzarella, and then I'll show you how to stack this for the great presentation. So I'm gonna start by putting some olive oil and balsamic glaze on the plate. So balsamic glaze is a balsamic that's been cooked down, and you'll see that it's quite a bit thicker than, you know, just the regular balsamic vinegar, and that gives me a nice place to start plating. I'm gonna take a little bit of this cucumber, and it's nice and cured, see, so it's not gonna repeat on you, it's kind of good that way, and we'll lay that down, and then that's kind of a little, a bed if you will, for my building. Then I'm gonna start with a smaller piece of the tomato. Just anchor that in there, and I always like to do a little bit of salt as I go, it's very much kind of build, and then a smaller piece of the mozzarella, there you are. You can layer in more cheese if you'd like. You can do a little pepper, just a little bit of a fun building process. I'll go with the next size, right there, and let me see, let's do another smaller piece, a little bigger, how's that? Nope, too big. Do another smaller piece of the mozzarella, and then a little more basil coming out. Seasoning. A little bit more. You can even add in, I've got some little pieces of basil flower, if you wanna kind of add that in. You're really building flavor, which is a lot of fun. Then let's do a larger tomato now, and then, whoop, don't push it out of line Rachelle, and then add in a larger piece of the mozzarella. You can also add more cucumber as you're building. I like to just have it as a bed on the bottom. Like that. Then I'm going again with another piece of basil. Just kind of having them go in slightly different directions as I build up. Then my topping, you can do, let's do this piece here. So you've got a nice stack, and you wanna firm it down, just a little bit. Get it nice and firm. Again, I'm always wanting to get salt right on the tomato, it just tastes great that way. Go a little bit more, and then you can top with a little more cucumber if you choose. Put a couple on there for a little visual. Kind of a little visual cue that you've got more cucumbers as you're going down. And then let's put a sprig on here. That's lovely. I always love in the summer there's just outrageous colors and shapes of cherry tomatoes, kind of like a confetti effect. So it's pretty fun to play with it. I've done this with children, and they love building it. It just really appeals to their creative nature. And you can't really go wrong. Another little hit like that. So my final garnish was a few more pieces of mozzarella, and I think it looks amazing. I hope you'll try this version of mine, of a mozzarella, balsamic, cucumber, tomato and basil salad.

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