Recipe Roundup: Sigona’s Strawberry Balsamic

Springtime Insalata Caprese with Basil Oil and a Strawberry Balsamic Reduction
Springtime Insalata Caprese with Basil Oil and a Strawberry Balsamic Reduction

Springtime Insalata Caprese with Basil Oil and a Strawberry Balsamic Reduction

Fresh, surprising, herbaceous and perfect for spring! This makes for a delightful appetizer or even a side salad. You may be wondering about strawberries and mozzarella, but it’s our Sigona’s Basil Oil that brings the whole dish together, paired with the syrupy sweet strawberry balsamic reduction. Adapted from The Olive Oil & Vinegar Lover’s Cookbook. Serves 2 to 4.


Directions: Add the balsamic to a small sauce pan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil then reduce to medium low and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. The reduction is done when it is reduced by nearly half and nicely coats the back of a spoon. Set aside to cool.

Toss the strawberries and mozzarella with 1 tablespoon basil oil, season with salt and pepper. Spread out the berries and cheese on a serving tray and then add the basil leaves.

Drizzle the entire dish with the remaining basil oil and a tablespoon or so of the reduced strawberry balsamic. Serve as is or provide small skewers.

Fresh Strawberry, Kale and Orzo Salad with a Balsamic Vinaigrette

Fresh Strawberry, Kale and Orzo Salad with a Balsamic Vinaigrette

This hearty salad serves nicely as a side or as a main dish, and is just lovely with any fresh berry. If you go with blueberries, try our blueberry balsamic in the vinaigrette. Instead of orzo, you can use farro, an ancient grain, if you’d like. Enjoy! Serves 3 to 4.

For the Salad:

  • 3/4 cup uncooked orzo
  • 1 cup chopped fresh strawberries
  • 1/4 cup chopped walnuts or pecans (look for some of our glazed varieties at Sigona’s)
  • 1/3 cup cubed or crumbled Feta or goat cheese
  • 2 cups shredded kale
  • 2 Tbsp minced basil, optional

For the Vinaigrette:

Directions: Cook the orzo just to al dente, according to package directions. Fluff and allow to cool in the fridge for about 20 minutes, stirring once.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together the garlic, shallot, honey, lemon zest, lemon juice and the balsamic. While whisking briskly, drizzle in the olive oil and mix well to emulsify the mixture. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.

In a large bowl, gently mix together the cooked and cooled orzo, the strawberries, nuts, cheese, shredded kale and basil, if using. Drizzle the vinaigrette over the top and toss to incorporate. Season with salt and pepper.

Serve chilled or at room temperature.

Sweet Balsamic Strawberries with Crème Fraîche

Sweet Balsamic Strawberries with Crème Fraîche

Simple can be best, especially when it comes to sweet, locally grown strawberries.  Creme Fraiche is a tangy, cultured cream that is richer, thicker and more flavorful than sour cream. You can use regular, traditional balsamic if you don’t want to use strawberry balsamic; espresso balsamic would also be fantastic. For garnish, use mint or basil leaves, whichever pleases your palate. Serves 2 to 4.


  • 1 basket, about 12 oz., strawberries, stems removed, sliced in half or quartered
  • Optional: A bit of brown sugar, about 1 tablespoon
  • 2 to 3 Tbsp Sigona’s Strawberry Balsamic (Mix it up! Try Sigona’s Espresso Balsamic)
  • About 4 oz. crème fraîche
  • Fresh mint or basil leaves, chiffonade

Directions: Place strawberries in a medium bowl. Stir in the brown sugar, if using, and the balsamic. Cover and allow berries to macerate (release their natural juices) at room temperature for at least an hour; stir occasionally.

Use a slotted spoon to transfer the berries to a serving dish or bowl. Drizzle with a bit of the reserved balsamic. Top with crème fraiche as desired; sprinkle with mint or basil.

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Raw Swiss Chard Salad with Fresh Strawberries, Barley, Feta and Sigona’s Basil Oil

Raw Swiss Chard Salad with Fresh Strawberries, Barley, Feta and Sigona’s Basil Oil

Looking for a way to change up your side salad? You’ve got to try this one. Don’t skip the basil oil— it adds an absolutely delicious layer of flavor that’s herbaceous and fresh; basil is fantastic with strawberries! Inspired by Cooking Light. Serves 4 to 6.


  • 1/2 cup uncooked barley or pearl barley
  • 2 1/2 Tbsp Sigona’s Basil Oil
  • 2 Tbsp Sigona’s Strawberry Balsamic
  • 1 1/2 tsp. minced red onion
  • 1/2 tsp. honey, such as Mountain Bloom from Honey Hole Honey Co., available at Sigona’s
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 bunch Swiss chard
  • At least 1 cup sliced fresh strawberries
  • Crumbled goat or Feta cheese, for sprinkling

Directions: Cook barley according to package directions. When it’s done, drain any excess water. Rinse barley under cold water, drain well and set aside.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk together the oil, balsamic, onion and honey, Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Fold the chard leaves in half lengthwise, leaf fronts together, then slice off the thick, tough stem, up through the leaf (saving the stems for another recipe, if you wish). Roll the leaves up then thinly slice (chiffonade) into rounds, creating long, thin ribbons. Massage the ribbons between your hands for about 3 minutes or until they’re just wilted a bit.

Add the chiffonade Swiss chard and barley to the vinaigrette; toss to coat. Divide among 4 to 6 salad plates, topping each with sliced strawberries and crumbled cheese. Serve.

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