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Simple Cooking: Balsamic Strawberry Basil Salad

By Caitlin Klein in Food on May 23, 2012 4:20PM

Festivals. Movies in the park. Bikes. And… strawberry and basil. These are all sure signs that summer might be here to stay. Welcome the heat and try our strawberry basil salad this week. The tang of the vinegar mixes with the sugar and sweetness of the strawberries for a refreshing side to any summer meal. The vanilla adds depth of flavor and elevates this simple salad from ordinary to extraordinary.

Chicagoist’s Balsamic Strawberry Basil Salad Serves 4

2 cups strawberries
1 handful basil leaves
1 teaspoon white sugar
1 teaspoon high quality Balsamic vinegar
Lime juice from ½ a fresh lime (about 1 ½ Tablespoons)
¼ teaspoon vanilla extract

Hull and slice the strawberries. De-stem the basil leaves and cut into strips. Place the strawberries and the basil into a large bowl (preferably glass).

In a small bowl, whisk together the sugar, vinegar, lime juice, and vanilla extract. Pour over strawberries and basil and stir to coat. Set in the refrigerator to macerate for at least 30 minutes prior to serving. Serve with a slotted spoon.

Note: You can save the juices from this salad to pour over ice cream or puff pastry.