This fresh, delicious summertime salad is an absolute favorite in our home, we make it about twice a month while the vegetables are in season then just vary the protein. Other top picks include grilled swordfish, tuna or a small fillet. Whether you have basil in your garden to make fresh pesto or you prefer store bought, it is a must! This highly flavorful sauce showcases a rich, butteriness which marries well with this incredibly food friendly Morgan Chardonnay which expresses medium oak, light citrus and pear.
Grilled Tomato Asparagus Salad with Fresh Mozzarella, Pesto, Shrimp & Scallops
16 Asparagus spears, trimmed
8 small vine-on or Roma tomatoes, halved
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper
4 ounces Baby Spinach
8 ounces Fresh Mozzarella, sliced into 8 pieces
¾ cup Kalamata Olives, pitted
1 cup Pesto, or enough to drizzle
16 large sea scallops
16 large shrimp
It is much easier to work with the tomatoes on a griddle atop the grill but if not the grill grates will work but will be slightly challenging.
Heat grill to 400°. Drizzle olive oil on the tomatoes, asparagus and on a separate plate the swordfish. Season all with salt and pepper. Griddle/Grill the tomatoes and asparagus until they become soft and slightly caramelized 10-12 minutes for asparagus and 25 minutes for the tomatoes. Remove from grill and let cool. Next grill shrimp and scallops 3 minutes per side. Meanwhile assemble the salad. Arrange tomatoes and asparagus on each plate. Add a small bunch of spinach then place kalamata olives on top. Lie mozzarella slices next to spinach. Add shrimp and scallops to each plate and drizzle with a generous amount of pesto.
3 garlic cloves, minced and slightly sauteed to remove bite
2 cups basil leaves
½ cup pine nuts, toasted
1-1 ½ cups extra virgin olive oil
¼ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Freshly ground black pepper
Blend the garlic, basil and pine nuts in a blender or food processor until fairly smooth. Transfer to a bowl. Stir in the olive oil, Parmesan and pepper until combined and season to taste. Refrigerate for up to 5 days.
2014 Morgan Highland Chardonnay – Santa Lucia Highlands, California
This focused, elegant Chardonnay’s aromas feature nectarine, river rock, and grapefruit. On the palate, the rich fruit flavors are complemented by a light touch of toasty oak and refreshing pear and lime zest.
With each vintage of Highland Chardonnay, Morgan showcases the unique attributes of their Double L Vineyard and the Santa Lucia Highlands AVA. The 2014 cuvee includes 63% fruit from the Double L and the balance from outstanding neighboring estates in the SLH, including McIntyre and Tondre. The Double L Vineyard has been “Certified Organic” since 2002 but has been conscientiously farmed in this method since the original plantings in 1997.