Is there anything better than caprese salad? I don’t think so ! And in the summer, I crave it all the time. I constantly have logs of fresh mozz and tons of basil always in my fridge :) This was fantastic!
1¼ cups uncooked quinoa, rinsed and drained
2 cups petite Roma or cherry tomatoes, halved (
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
Fresh ground pepper
2 small shallots, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
¼ cup packed basil leaves, thinly sliced
4 ounces fresh part-skim mozzarella cheese, grated (about 1 cup of grated cheese)
8 ounces fresh part-skim mozzarella cheese, sliced into 1/4–inch rounds
2 beefsteak tomatoes, sliced into ¼-inch rounds
¼ cup balsamic vinegar
Preparing your Caprese Quinoa Bake:
-Pre-heat your oven to 400 degrees.
-In a small pot, bring the quinoa and 1¾ cups plus 2 tablespoons water to a boil. Lower to a simmer and cook, covered, for 15 minutes until all of the water has been absorbed. Let the quinoa rest, covered, for 10 minutes. Fluff with a fork.
-While the quinoa is cooking, place the halved tomatoes on a foil-lined baking sheet. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil and season with salt and fresh ground pepper.
Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a medium pan over medium heat. When hot, add the minced shallots and garlic. Cook for 2-3 minutes until the shallots have become translucent and the garlic is fragrant.
-In a large bowl combine the quinoa, roasted tomatoes, cooked shallots and garlic, and basil.
-Add Cheese, Transfer the quinoa mixture to a large skillet and smooth the top
Make circle of overlapping tomatoes and mozzarella, covering the surface of the quinoa.
-Cover the skillet loosely with foil and bake for 10 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for another 20 minutes until the cheese is bubbling and lightly browned.
While your quinoa bake is in the oven, place the balsamic vinegar in a small saucepan. Bring to a gentle boil and cook for 3-5 minutes until the vinegar becomes syrupy. Remove from the heat and set aside.
-Sprinkle your quinoa bake with freshly sliced basil, drizzle with the balsamic reduction, and serve immediately.