Caprese Salad

Appetizers, Dinner, Salads

This Caprese Salad is inspired by Mozza Pizzeria in Los Angeles, California. Slow-roasted tomatoes are served atop a bed of burrata cheese, a spoonful of fresh pesto and a drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil.

Bowl of Caprese Sald with Breadstick

The thing I love about Italian food the most is the simplicity. Simple food made with incredible, fresh ingredients. That’s how I think of summer-y Italian food. And the caprese salad is no exception.

What’s In a Caprese Salad

Traditionally Caprese Salad is made with sliced summer tomatoes, sliced mozzarella, a few sprigs of fresh basil, a drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil and a few cracks of pepper. She’s a simple salad! This salad represents the colors of the Italian flag: red, green and white.

Mozza Pizzeria’s Caprese Salad

Now, let’s move onto Mozza Pizzeria’s caprese salad made by Chef Nancy Silverton. It’s glorious, if you’ve never had it. A big ball of burrata that’s made in-house is placed on a plate. On top of that is a few spoonfuls of hand-pounded pesto that’s made in a mortar and pestle. And then a few slow-roasted tomatoes–still on their vine–is added. Topped with a healthy glug of extra-virgin olive oil.

Closeup of tomatoes

How to Make Caprese Salad

  1. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Add the tomatoes to a baking dish and drizzle it with olive oil and a few pinches of salt. Roast for about 30 to 35 minutes, until very soft. Allow them to come to room temperature.
  2. Make the pesto: to a food processor add the pine nuts, garlic, Pecorino Romano and Parmesan-Reggiano. Pulse until they’re very ground up. And then add the basil and olive oil. Process one last time until it forms a pesto. Give it a taste test and then add a few pinches of salt, if needed. I didn’t need any because the Pecorino cheese can be quite salty.
  3. Plate it up! Add the burrata cheese to the bottom of a wide bowl. Add a few spoonfuls of pesto. And then the tomatoes on top. Lastly, drizzle with some extra-virgin olive oil.

Close up shot of pesto

Tips and Tricks

  • Cherry Tomatoes – these tomatoes were on the vine, but if yours aren’t, no biggie! Just spoon them on top of the burrata–it’ll still look pretty.
  • Pesto – you can freeze any excess pesto in a freezer-safe container for up to 2 months.

Bowl of Caprese Sald with Breadstick

If you make this salad, let me know on Instagram!

Looking for more recipes like this one? Here are a few that I love:

Overhead Shot of Caprese Salad

Caprese Salad

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0 from 0 votes
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Serving Size: 4
Calories: 411kcal
This Caprese Salad is inspired by Mozza Pizzeria in Los Angeles, California. Slow-roasted tomatoes are served atop a bed of burrata cheese, a spoonful of fresh pesto and a drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil.

Ingredients

Slow-Roasted Tomatoes:

  • 1 bunch small vine-ripe tomatoes , (alternatively, you could use cherry tomatoes)
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt

Simple Pesto:

  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • 2 peeled garlic cloves
  • 1 ounce Pecorino Romano
  • 1 ounce Parmesan-Reggiano
  • 2 cups fresh basil leaves, plus a few more as garnish
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil

For Assembly:

  • 4 ounces burrata cheese
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

Directions

To Slow-Roast the Tomatoes:

  • Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. In a baking dish, add the vine-ripened tomatoes, drizzle with olive oil and top with a few pinches of salt.
  • Transfer to the oven to roast for about 30 to 35 minutes, until they have released some juices and their skins are all wrinkly. Set aside to come to room temperature.

To Make the Pesto:

  • In a food processor, add the pine nuts, garlic, Pecorino and Parmesan. Pulse until thoroughly combined and until it's all ground up. Add in the basil leaves and olive oil. Blend up one last time until it forms a pesto, about 30 seconds.

To Assemble the Salad:

  • Add the burrata to a wide bowl. I like to spread it out into one even, thinnish layer. Add a spoonful or two of pesto. And then arrange the tomatoes on top. Drizzle with a glug of olive oil. And serve with bread.

Notes

Tips and Tricks:Β 
  • Cherry Tomatoes - these tomatoes were on the vine, but if yours aren't, no biggie! Just spoon them on top of the burrata--it'll still look pretty.
  • Pesto - you can freeze any excess pesto in a freezer-safe container for up to 2 months.
Equipment:Β 
Enamel Baking Dish | Food Processor | Olive Oil Dispenser | OXO Cup Measures | Kitchen Towels |Β 
CourseAppetizer
CuisineAmerican, Italian
Keywordcaprese salad, italian caprese salad, mozza caprese salad
Serving: 4g | Calories: 411kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 43g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Cholesterol: 27mg | Sodium: 86mg | Potassium: 86mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 861IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 247mg | Iron: 1mg
Did you make this Recipe? Tag me Today!Tag @acozykitchen on Instagram and hashtag it #acozykitchen
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33 Comments

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Recipe Rating




  • Reply Chris @ TheKeenanCookBook September 14, 2011 at 5:35 pm

    This looks amazing. Fried Mozzarella can’t be beat =D

  • Reply The food gospel according to ruth September 14, 2011 at 5:34 pm

    This could be the best salad recipe I have ever seen! Looks amazing…can’t wait to try it!

  • Reply Angharad September 14, 2011 at 5:09 pm

    This is a divine idea. I feel like my husband would get behind this salad in a big way. And anything that involves cheese, fried or not, sounds like an excellent idea to me.

  • Reply Dana B September 14, 2011 at 4:59 pm

    omg this looks fantastic!! Have never fried mozzarella, but will have to. (There’s a reason my waistline isn’t shrinking πŸ™ ) btw, have you tried adding a little romano to your pesto along with the parmesan-reggiano? It really makes or breaks pesto for me. Now I’m getting hungry so I better eat breakfast before I decide this salad is breakfast food. Then again, why not? πŸ™‚

    • Reply Adrianna September 14, 2011 at 5:18 pm

      I haven’t. I need to do this! Sounds delicious. Romano has a strong flavor so I bet it’d be amazing.

  • Reply Amanda (onceuponarecipe) September 14, 2011 at 4:10 pm

    Oy. This looks superb! I am all over that fried cheese.

  • Reply France September 14, 2011 at 3:33 pm

    I love fried cheese but my favorite is haloumi, mostly because I can pan fry it with none of the hassles of breading it or using oil. The down side is you don’t get the gooey cheesy goodness that only melting style cheeses can give. Swoon.

  • Reply kate September 14, 2011 at 3:18 pm

    omg the delicious! how did no one think to fry the cheese BEFORE!? yum!
    so i have a question though – what do you do with and how do you dispose of the fry oil? i don’t have a fancy vehicle that uses grease for fuel! :p

    • Reply Adrianna September 14, 2011 at 5:17 pm

      Oh people definitely did it before me! Fried mozzarella sticks? Fried goat cheese balls? I’m definitely not the inventor, though I wish I was. πŸ˜‰

      I let the oil come to room temperature and then dump it in a plastic container, seal it and then throw it away.

      • Reply kate September 14, 2011 at 6:08 pm

        haha yes people have fried cheese! i just mean in relation to ‘caprese’ with the tomato and the basil and pesto *drool*
        thanks! Thats what i was doing but figured i was doing it wrong… yay for accidentally doing it right!

  • Reply tina September 14, 2011 at 2:57 pm

    I die!!!!! nothing is better than fried cheese! gorgeous gorgeous photos A!

  • Reply kitty quintana September 14, 2011 at 1:39 pm

    This is mozzarella heaven; this looks fabulous! love the pics.

  • Reply Tara @ Chip Chip Hooray September 14, 2011 at 1:36 pm

    This. Is evil.

    Why is fried cheese so flipping good?

  • Reply Bev Weidner September 14, 2011 at 12:38 pm

    Stop it. Stop it now.

    My heart can’t take the beauty.

  • Reply Sue/the view from great island September 14, 2011 at 11:33 am

    This is pretty amazing. You’re right about being all over the place these days, one day I want stew, the next night I’m eating corn on the cob and tomatoes. In fact I had heirloom tomatoes and mozzerella last night, but nothing so grand as this.

  • Reply Jessica @ How Sweet September 14, 2011 at 10:40 am

    oh no you didn’t!

  • Reply Katrina September 14, 2011 at 10:32 am

    Aww man, this sounds so yummy!!

  • Reply Natashia@foodonpaper September 14, 2011 at 8:25 am

    Caprese is my FAVOURITE salad… this just looks so yum!!

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