Strawberry Caprese Salad

By far one of the highlights of spring has to be farm fresh strawberries.  Whether you pick your own, purchase them at a farmers market, or travel to your local strawberry farm, there is something absolutely wonderful about these sweet, juicy berries that always beckon and call my name in the month of May!

Fresh Strawberries

While just washing them and popping twenty or so a few in my mouth throughout the day is always delicious, I love to cook or make dishes that incorporate my favorite berry.  From jam (Strawberry Wine Jam, Vanilla-Laced Strawberry Jam)  to dessert (White-Chocolate & Strawberry Pie, Pavlova with fresh berries) or even breakfast (Mixed-Berry Muffins)your imagination can guide you to all kinds of mouth-watering treats!

Recently I stumbled on a recipe for a Strawberry Caprese Salad that Southern Living Mag had shared on Facebook.  After tweaking it just a little, I put together my own Strawberry Caprese Salad that was absolutely flavorful and delicious; a real spring treat for sure!

Strawberry Caprese Salad

INGREDIENTS

1/4 cup Peach White Balsamic Vinegar (can be purchased in a speciality store)

1 clove garlic, minced

2 Tablespoons Splenda brown sugar blend

1/4 teaspoon pink Himalayan salt

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

1/4 cup chopped basil

10 ounces mozzarella, cut into bite sized pieces

1 1/2 quarts fresh strawberries, quartered.

Strawberry Caprese Salad2

ASSEMBLING THE CAPRESE SALAD

Whisk together the peach white balsamic vinegar, garlic, Splenda brown sugar blend, pink salt and black pepper in a large bowl until sugar is dissolved. Add olive oil in a slow, steady stream, whisking constantly until smooth. Add fresh basil (saving just a little to garnish with) and mozzarella cheese bites; toss to coat. Cover and chill about 2 hours. Stir in strawberries; let stand at room temperature 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Serve as an appetizer with toasted French bread baguette slices (I found mine at Fresh Market in the deli). Garnish with thinly sliced fresh basil.

Strawberry Caprese Salad6

This is such a unique dish and with the use of farm fresh flavors of spring, you can’t go wrong!

Strawberry Caprese Salad3

finger food snacks

The Strawberry Caprese Salad makes a great addition to a finger food buffet for a girls night in!

 Strawberry Caprese Salad4

What is your favorite dish to incorporate strawberries?  Inquiring minds want to know!

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Easter Bunny Fluff

This year is just flying by; spring is in the air, and in under two weeks it’ll be Easter Sunday!

Welcome spring

We are planning to host friends over for the Easter holiday; friends with children much younger than our own.  Keeping that in mind I have planned a few things for our menu that will make everyone happy!  First on the list is this totally unhealthy, but absolutely delicious Easter Bunny Fluff. With only five ingredients, it is super easy to make and sure to be a hit at your own egg hunt or spring holiday gathering. Continue reading

First Yard Sale of the Season

Just before the rain and a high of 41 returned to our forecast today, we were able to enjoy a really nice weekend here in the ever weather temperamental sate of South Carolina. 
Of course the beauty of a pretty first weekend of spring is that people start setting up for yard sales.  
My parents were in town for the weekend as well, so along with Audley, we took off and hit up the first yard sale of the season, which happened to be just around the corner from our house!
We discovered a treasure trove of goodies as we browsed; antiques galore, especially dolls and dishes.  My mom actually found a doll that was made very similar to one that she shared with her sister as a little girl; one that was left outside and melted in the rain.  
She thought it might have been made of chalk or something similar, but never knew.  Did anyone else ever have a dollie like that?
Tea Party anyone?

Just one of the beautiful dolls we discovered on our adventure
Boxes of vintage linens in the drive
As for dishes, what a variety!  From mid-century barware to 1930’s Depression glass and collectable plates galore, there was plenty to choose from.

I loved the antique butter presses …. but NOT the price tag!
My mother found several pieces marked with a “W” which is our family monogram.  When inquiring about the background, the woman who owned all of the beautiful wares (and had passed away a year ago) was a “Woolworth”.
As in the 5 & dime Woolworths. 
How cool is that?
While I often browse more than I shop at yard sales (I need to have one myself!), I did actually purchase some neat goodies at this one.
I absolutely loved this hymnal from 1893 that I picked up for a dollar.  It was so neat to thumb through the book and realize that some of the hymns we still sing in worship on Sunday are well over a hundred years old!
The pretty red, white and blue tablecloth the book is laying on is a vintage 1960’s beauty that I grabbed for $5.  I thought it would be perfect for a Memorial Day or July Fourth picnic cloth.  Hopefully I will be able to clean it up nicely. 
I loved this set of pink depression glass bowls from the 1930’s.  I wasn’t going to get them, but my sweet hubby talked the owner down from $75 to $40 ( yes, you can bargain at yard sales).  I must admit, they are beautiful and still look nearly perfect.  I wondered if they had ever been used.

I also picked up this really pretty mid-century cocktail pitcher with the original blown glass swizzle stick for $5!  I was so excited because it fits just perfectly with my bar car that I restored a couple of years back.
Momma discovered a old camera from the 1950’s that she had to have.  She also purchased a couple of the table linens and two antique pewter items;  a pitcher monogrammed with a “W” and a tea pot stamped with 1886 on it.  
In researching the latter on Ebay we found similar pots selling for over $400 dollars!  I would say she really lucked out!
I don’t know how many more casual weekends we will be able to enjoy this spring, but I sure enjoyed this one without any demands.  Hopefully we’ll get to hit up a few more yard sales or flea markets soon!