3 bunches basil
1 pint canola oil
8 baby beets in different colors
2 cups water
1 cup quinoa
4 pc watermelon, cut into 2×4-inch rectangles and 1-inch high
8 slices prosciutto
2 pc fresh burrata
1 tsp Espelette pepper flakes
12 cherry tomatoes, cut in half
Lemon juice Salt
Trim and peel the asparagus. Blanch until al dente, then chill in ice water and reserve.Pick all the basil leaves off the stems and blanch the basil leaves very quickly then shock in ice water. Remove from the ice bath and remove as much water as possible by squeezing in a towel. Finely chop the basil and blend in the blender on high with the canola oil for 2 to 3 minutes, then strain through cheesecloth.
Wrap the beets in foil with a pinch of salt and a sprinkle of olive oil, and roast at 350°F for 40 minutes. Once beets are cool, remove skins and quarter them. Bring the water to a boil, add the quinoa, and cook for 15 minutes or until tender. Spread the quinoa on a tray and cool. Once cool, take 2 cups of the quinoa and season with the basil oil, (about 4 tablespoons), the lemon juice, and salt to taste.
Place the piece of watermelon in the middle of the plate then add about half a cup of the seasoned quinoa on top. Stack the blanched asparagus, prosciutto, and half a piece of burrata on top of that. Sprinkle the Espelette pepper on the burrata, then place the beets and cherry tomatoes around it. Garnish with a few small basil leaves and a drizzle of basil oil, then enjoy!
“Buttered” in Italian, burrata is rich, fresh cheese at its best. Although formed into a ball like mozzarella, that is where the comparisons end. Cut inside and a soft, stringy curd and fresh cream oozes out. This is the ritagli, or the remains of mozzarella making, filled inside a hollow mozzarella pouch and tied off at the top. Usually served fresh, at room temperature.