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Fresh, easy salad for summer

Amanda Long

This weekend will be my second go with the Farmer’s Market. This time I will be a vendor throughout the entire summer — my first booth was a few years back making pies and we sold out. So this summer on June 14 and 28, July 12 and July 26, Aug. 9 and Aug. 23 and Sept. 6 you can find me selling sandwiches. On my “off” weeks, the Westside Pour House will be offering a similar menu.

I am so excited to be part of the market and get to share my food with fellow market-goers. I feed my friends and family and they love it.

And I share my recipes with all of you, so now I thought it was time to share my food, too.

The recipe this week is from my demo at the Greenhouse Garden Center this past weekend. It’s a fresh and easy salad. (Catch me at the Greenhouse Garden Center for a demo this summer July 20 and Aug. 17).

Follow me on Facebook, http://www.facebook.com/chivecooking, to keep up with all the upcoming events. We are getting ready to roll out some new adventures as well

Caprese Salad with Cannellini Beans with Garlic Vinaigrette

1 head of butter lettuce (or your favorite lettuce will do)

1 can cannellini beans

2 cups halved cherry tomatoes

1/2 red onion, thinly sliced

handful of pine nuts

1 container of fresh mozzarella, chunks (boconccini – small balls)

2 basil leaves, chopped

Chop the lettuce into bite sized pieces. Rise the cannellini beans in a colander and then layer on top of the lettuce. Next cut your cherry tomatoes in half and layer those over the salad. Thinly slice your red onion. This is key to keeping the onion appealing rather than overwhelming.

Layer over the salad. Cut the fresh mozzarella into bite sized pieces.

I like to buy the small balls and cut them in half, but you can also cube the fresh larger ball. Chop your basil leaves and layer those and toasted pine nuts all around the salad.

Garlic Vinaigrette

1 clove minced garlic

2 Tbsp white balsamic (red or white wine are good too)

3-4 Tbsp olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

Smash the garlic: Place garlic clove on a cutting board with one large pinch of salt and mash into a past with the side of a knife. If you have a mortar and pestal you can use that too!

Next, in a Mason jar, add the garlic paste, and all of the other ingredients. Slap on the lid and shake vigorously. You can get out some aggression here. Pour as much or as little dressing as you’d like on your salad. If you are serving it to a crowd,

I would lightly dress it and leave some dressing for your guests to add if they would like.

Hope you enjoy this fresh summer salad, and hope you are also enjoying your summer.

Come visit the farmer’s market this Saturday and stop by to say “hi.”

Amanda Long is passionate about cooking and posts her favorite recipes at http://www.stuffurface.wordpress.com. She is also the owner of Chive Cooking.