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Winter Caprese Salad

  • Yield: 4 1x


A delicious Italian appetizer salad, this slightly-adapted version of Mario Batali's Winter Caprese Salad features the bold, sweet flavors of slow roasted tomatoes, creamy mozzarella, and an amazing basil pesto.


  • Oven-Roasted Tomatoes
  • Agrodolce
  • Pesto
  • 20 mini balls of mozzarella (often labeled bocconcini)
  • 1/8 c. Pine Nuts, for garnish

For the Oven-Roasted Tomatoes:

  • 12 Plum Tomatoes
  • Drizzle of Olive Oil
  • Kosher Salt, for seasoning

For the Agrodolce:

  • 1/8 c. red wine vinegar
  • 1/8 c. sugar

For the Pesto:

  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 1/2 - 2 c. fresh basil
  • 1/8 c. pine nuts (also called pignoli)
  • 1/2 - 3/4 c. olive oil
  • Kosher Salt and Freshly Ground Pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 c. parmesan cheese


For the Oven-Roasted Tomatoes:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Cut the tomatoes length-wise in half and using your fingers, scoop out the seeds and pulp. Place tomatoes on the baking sheet and drizzle lightly with olive oil and sprinkle with kosher salt. Using your hands, make sure tomatoes are evenly coated with the oil and salt. Arrange cut side down on the baking sheet.
  2. Bake the tomatoes for 20-30 minutes, until the tomato skin begins to shrivel. Remove from oven and let cool slightly. Reduce the oven temperature to 250°F.
  3. Carefully remove the tomato skins and discard. Transfer peeled tomatoes to another baking sheet lined with aluminum foil and roast for about 1 1/2 hours, until the tomatoes are collapsed and slightly wrinkled but still moist. Let cool. These can be refrigerated for a couple of days.

For the Agrodolce:

  1. Combine the sugar and red wine vinegar in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Remove from heat and let cool. This can be refrigerate for several days.

For the Pesto:

  1. Place the garlic in a food processor and chop. Add in the basil and pine nuts and process until finely chopped. With the motor running, drizzle in the oil. Transfer the mixture to a small bowl and stir in Parmesan cheese. Season with Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper. This can be refrigerated for a couple days, just bring back to room temperature and stir before serving.

When Ready to Serve:

  1. Combine the tomatoes and with about 2 tbl. agrodolce in a small bowl.
  2. Divide the tomatoes among the plates. Place the mini-mozzarella balls in the center of each plate and top with the pesto. Garnish with pine nuts and serve.