In a bid to get children to eat healthier, ‘The Cook At Home Dad’ shares tips and recipes he creates for and with his kids.
Summer is salad season, and that is not always an easy sell to my young children. I discovered that by making some slight changes to a traditional Caprese salad (infusing the oil with garlic and red pepper flake and adding ‘salami croutons’), it adds color and depth that make the dish interesting enough for my kids to enjoy it. The real key is having your kids help you assemble the salad – I tell my kids the plate is their canvas, and the ingredients are their paint!
This is a go-to for summer outdoor dinner parties, and a frequently requested through the week change-up by my kids. Enjoy!
- 3 vine ripened tomatoes, medium to large
- 1 small ball of fresh mozzarella
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1/4 C plus 1 T extra virgin olive oil
- 5-6 pieces of Genoa salami, diced
- 15-20 fresh basil leaves, whole
- 1/4 t garlic powder
- 1/2 t red pepper flake
- salt and pepper to taste
- In a small saute pan over medium high heat, drizzle 1 T olive oil and add diced salami.
- Cook until salami is crisp (about five minutes).
- Remove salami with a slotted spoon and drain on a paper towel.
- Wash pan.
- Return pan to medium high heat and add 1/4 C olive oil and garlic cloves.
- Cook the garlic until it becomes a deep golden brown and then add pepper flake.
If you under cook the garlic the flavor will be too strong, if you overcook the garlic the flavor will become bitter. When cooked just right the garlic becomes rich and sweet.
This is a great place to have your younger kids assist you. Have them put the salad together or top with the salami “croutons.”
14. Drizzle the salad with the oil and top with salami croutons, garlic powder (dried garlic has a more concentrated flavor and adds an extra kick to this flavor profile), and fine chop the 3 garlic cloves and sprinkle evenly over the salad with salt and pepper to taste.
15. Garnish with a bed of lettuce topped with vine-on tomatoes and the top of a basil flower.
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Photos: Courtesy of the author. Originally appeared on The Cook At Home Dad. Reprinted with permission.
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