Pepper “Marinated” Strawberry Salad with a Strawberry- Balsamic Vinaigrette

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for the strawberries

4-5 cups strawberries, cut in half or quarters, depending on size

½ cup sugar                                                  

¼-1/2 cup black pepper to taste

Toss the strawberries with the sugar and black pepper; set aside to maserate for about an hour.

for the vinaigrette:

½ cup balsamic vinegar                               

1 cups extra virgin olive oil

2 Tbsp. shallots, minced                               

1 tsp. garlic, minced

½ cup strawberries, chopped                     

½ cup mint, chopped

salt, pepper and honey to taste

Place the vinegar in a blender; add the oil to emulsify; add the strawberry, blending to combine. 

Add the remaining ingredients.  Adjust seasoning.

to serve:

Toss salad greens lightly with vinaigrette; toss the strawberries lightly with vinaigrette. 

Mound the strawberries on the greens.

Optional: serve with ripe triple brie, goat cheese or buffalo milk mozzarella.