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Peach & Arugula Caprese Salad

Peach & Arugula Caprese Salad from www.loveandoliveoil.com

We most often associate caprese salad, or insalata caprese (literally meaning Salad of Capri, an island off the coast of italy) with tomatoes. And in fact, it was originally intended to mimic the colors of the Italian flag with its red, white, and green elements.

Nowadays, pretty much anything that features fresh basil, mozzarella, and balsamic has become caprese. Whether it be with tomatoes but in a unique form (such as our favorite Caprese Pasta Salad) or something that replaces the tomatoes altogether, we still call it caprese. I guess it’s a more efficient way of titling something than saying Such and Such Salad with Basil, Mozzarella, Balsamic Vinegar, and Olive Oil. Caprese is much more efficient and is becoming familiar enough that most people know what to expect.

That’s not to say we’re going to stop twisting it. What’s next, caprese chocolate chip cookies?

Um, no. Not from me, at least.

Peach & Arugula Caprese Salad from www.loveandoliveoil.com

But this salad rightfully deserves to be called caprese, regardless of its notable lack of tomatoes.

Tomatoes and peaches are surprisingly similar and can often be used interchangeably. Treating a tomato as a fruit rather than a vegetable can produce surprising(ly delicious) results. When you think about, both fruits are sweet and tender summer fruits with thin skins and juicy flesh. Looking at a caprese salad with the fruit-like nature of the tomato in mind, substituting peaches makes perfect sense.

Peach & Arugula Caprese Salad from www.loveandoliveoil.com

Sometimes, real life is a bit messier than what you see in the pictures. I try to represent the food on this blog accurately and true-to-life, and felt that the cropped shots above didn’t quite show the whole picture.

You know when you start to re-organize and end up questioning every purchase you’ve ever made? Well, I recently did a major prop purge, getting rid of nearly 1/4 of what I own. The giveaway pile kept growing and growing and eventually took over our entire dining table for upwards of a week, leaving us with only a tiny square suitable for eating. I mean really, we get this lovely new table and then are barely able to use it? Alas, the dishes were all able to find new homes, and we have now reclaimed our reclaimed dining table.

While it feels good to clean house, to reduce the clutter and get rid of things I haven’t used in years, I still struggle with it. But I might NEED that super fragile and totally impractical glass milk carton for a post sometime in the not-so-near future! But that neon yellow polka dot plate that I’ve had for 5 years and never used just might be the perfect dish for that batch of hypothetical cupcakes I may/may not make 2 1/2 years from now.

Really, Lindsay. You’re more reasonable than that. For once, at least, I tried to be, and am doing my best to remember that these dishes went to good homes where they might actually be used, rather than just sitting and collecting dust and taking up shelf space that could be used for NEW things. Ah, yes. NEW things! Getting rid of old things totally means I’m justified in buying new things, right?

Peach & Arugula Caprese Salad

Yield: 2 servings

Total Time: 10 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 2 ounces (1/2 a bag) baby arugula
  • 1 handful fresh basil leaves, coarsely chopped or torn
  • balsamic vinegar
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 1 large peach, pitted and cut into wedges
  • 4 ounces ciliegine or bocconcini mozzarella (small balls), halved or quartered

Directions:

  1. In a large salad bowl, toss arugula and basil with a splash of balsamic vinegar and olive oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Divide among serving bowls. Top with peach wedges and mozzarella balls and serve.

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21 CommentsLeave a Comment →

  1. 1
    Posted On August 11, 2014 at 5:15 am

    You’re braver than I. I have so many dishes that I have NEVER used..but one day just might be PERFECT, so I can’t part with them.  Maybe someday.
    Until then though, I’ll just eat ALL the salad.  Love the addition of peaches! Pinned!

    Reply

  2. 2
    Posted On August 11, 2014 at 6:51 am

    Love the simplicity of this salad! so yummy!

    Reply

  3. 3
    Posted On August 11, 2014 at 7:28 am

    This salad looks so dreamy. 

    I know I need to declutter some of my food props. There are plates that I never use! I keep thinking ‘someday, I learn how to make it photogenic. And food photo trends change so frequently.’ You’re right though, it’s time to purge.

    I really adore the ‘keepin’ it real’ photo. Seriously!

    Reply

  4. 4
    Posted On August 11, 2014 at 7:35 am

    Absolutely you are justified to bring in new things now :) Cleaning out old things is so hard, but I always feel so much lighter in the end. I hope you do too!

    Reply

  5. 5
    Posted On August 11, 2014 at 8:00 am

    Absolutely beautiful salad.  And I adore your dining table and chairs!  :)

    Reply

  6. 6
    Posted On August 11, 2014 at 8:06 am

    I might say, “You have such awesome props on that table!” I love them! And this salad is stunning – love it! Hope you had a great weekend! :)

    Reply

  7. 7
    Posted On August 11, 2014 at 8:13 am

    I love it! Since I made my lentil-barley-salad with blueberries and peaches, I’m in love with fruits in salads! It’s so refreshing during summertime. Especially, as I can never get enough of all those ripe and tasty fruit! Don’t want to miss it in my salad anymore… Thanks for sharing! :)

    Reply

  8. 8
    Posted On August 11, 2014 at 8:18 am

    Lindsay I have laughing as I read this because there is something about August that must make us want to purge and renew our props…I have been doing the same thing, my daughter, Whitney as well and you…how many others like us are out there purging? I know I always need more props and newer or newer-older props so now we all have room! Right? Right.

    Reply

  9. 9
    Posted On August 11, 2014 at 8:45 am

    Lindsay, what a fresh salad! I love the peppery flavor of arugula and I’m sure the sweetness of the peaches and saltiness of the mozzarella really compliment it! Pinned for later…

    Reply

  10. 10
    Posted On August 11, 2014 at 9:26 am

    Yum!  I have been making peach salads like crazy this summer! I think it’s driving my husband nuts.  I haven’t tried it with mozzarella yet so I will have to do that.  Here is a link to a few great summer salads that involve fruit and cheese
    http://www.inallofhersplendor.com/2014/08/01/5-sensational-summer-side-salads/

    Reply

  11. 11
    Posted On August 11, 2014 at 10:24 am

    Peach season has finally arrived here in Michigan and this salad has my name on it. Love your real life photos too. :) 

    Reply

  12. 12
    Posted On August 11, 2014 at 10:31 am

    This looks delicious! So many of my favorite ingredients rolled into one scrumptious salad! 

    Reply

  13. 13
    Posted On August 11, 2014 at 12:56 pm

    Send those props over to me!! And yes, purging means you can totally buy new things. Actually, that a “rule” I have with my clothes. Buy something new, donate something old. I stick with it most of the time and it keeps my closet from exploding. But now I suppose I should consider doing that with my dishes….

    Happy Monday Lindsay!

    Reply

  14. 14
    Posted On August 12, 2014 at 10:04 pm

    Love this twist on caprese or whatever it classifies as. Also even though your table is cluttered, it looks like organized clutter! I’m always so jealous of how much natural light you have in your photos of your home. Also, I have a feeling I will be purging a lot of stuff myself once I get my things out of PODS storage. After 6+ months without all of it, how much do I really need?

    Reply

  15. 15
    Posted On August 13, 2014 at 7:54 am

    Haha you totally sound like me! I just moved a few weeks ago and had the purge a bunch of props. I have the same logic “oh this would look great with x recipe that I *might* make someday! And it’s only 50 cents. It costs like $5 brand new!” All hope is lost when I see cake stands in thrift stores (and yes, I have seen them).

    Anyway, I don’t even like salads that much, but you’re making me want this peach caprese one! Probably because it doesn’t use lettuce. I kinda hate lettuce.

    Reply

    • Posted On August 13, 2014 at 7:59 am

      Arugula > lettuce. :)

  16. 16
    Posted On August 13, 2014 at 11:53 am

    Gorgeous! 

    Reply

  17. 17
    Posted On August 13, 2014 at 3:19 pm

    Gosh this salad looks so good and lately I have been addicted to mozzarella balls!! Never knew they tasted so good!!

    Reply

  18. 18
    Posted On August 13, 2014 at 10:38 pm

    This is totally my kind of salad!

    Reply

  19. 19
    Dani H
    Posted On August 15, 2014 at 10:39 pm

    My taste buds are imagining peaches and balsamic and I’m beginning to drool ~ this sounds absolutely delicious!

    Congrats on the purging ~ a task I am truly horrible at, because you KNOW the next week I WILL need something I got rid of. But the thought of being able to replace those things with new….. that may just be the motivation I need. Thanks!

    Reply

  20. 20
    Nicole (@nashvillenicole)
    Posted On August 21, 2014 at 10:02 am

    I was actually in NYC earlier this summer and ate at a Bon Appetite writer’s favorite spot called Estela, where they served us a salad, much like this, that I’ve been recreating all summer!
    Theirs was arugula and peaches (of course), tossed with mostly just really good olive oil, a dash of balsamic vinegar and a splash of lemon juice and liberal amounts of pepper and salt. But the kicker was the mounds of ultra thin fluffy petals of pecorino. I thought that the cheese would drown the bright flavors, but it’s incredibly delicious and positively craveable. 
    Highly recommend trying the pecorino twist; I’ve been getting dates with it all summer! ;)

    Reply

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