This Winter Caprese Salad featuring slow-roasted tomatoes is an elegant and creative dinner party appetizer that can be made ahead of time for easy entertaining!
This past weekend Asheley and I voluntarily participated in a sleep deprivation experiment, also known as chaperoning our church's middle school youth group on their Winter Weekend retreat. For many of the kids, it was their first time going away without their parents. And for middle school boys, apparently that means let's eat as much junk food as possible and not shower all weekend. I smelled things I don't think I'll ever be able to erase from my memory.
But in all honesty, it was a wonderful experience for both the kids and us leaders. Watching kids interact with each other and forming friendships. Joining together with a whole lot of other kids from various churches in worship and game time. Having great, in-depth discussions about some difficult subject matter. It was a really great weekend.
And let's just say that when we got home, Asheley and I enjoyed a long, LONG night's sleep.
I wish I could somehow make some sort of crazy, clever transition into talking about this Winter Caprese Salad. But my brain is still not caught up on sleep apparently.
But let's just say this. If you are a fan of caprese salad in the summer, when tomatoes are at the very peak of optimal ripeness and juiciness, you are going to go bonkers over this dish. And if you're a fan of Mario Batali, you'll go extra bonkers.. this is a dish from his restaurant Otto in NYC.
Winter tomatoes stink. Flavorless. Pale. Sad. But when they are gently slow-roasted in the oven and then tossed in agrodolce (the Italian answer to "sweet and sour"), something utterly magical happens.
This is a dish that I have repeatedly served at dinner parties, and because everyone always raves about it, will continue to be featured as an appetizer for years to come. All the components of the dish can be made ahead of time way before guests arrive, which is a major plus in my entertaining book.
And listen, you'll notice in the recipe I suggest pine nuts as a garnish. I apparently forgot to do that in the photos above. Doh! Hate it when that happens.Print