Caprese salad with oven-roasted cherry tomatoes and ciliegine
- cherry tomatoes
- olive oil
- sea salt, to taste
- fresh basil leaves
- mozzarella ciliegine (bite-sized mozzarella)
Heat the oven to 350 F. After removing the stem (if present), cut each tomato in half lengthwise and place in a bowl. Toss the tomato halves lightly with a bit of salt and of olive oil and some slivered basil leaves. (I like my tomatoes without salt, but I don't expect people to agree with me.) Arrange the tomato halves in one layer, cut side up, on a baking sheet lined with a silicone mat and bake them for 45 minutes. (Check after 40 minutes.)
A few minutes before the oven timer is set to beep, cut in half some bite-sized mozzarella and put them in one layer on small plates (I actually like to use bowls). Take the baking sheet out of the oven and delicately spoon the tomatoes over the mozzarella. Optionally add a touch of olive oil and/or a bit of slivered basil. Serve immediately.
I have omitted quantities in the description of the recipe, because those can be varied according to your taste and the number of people sharing the dish. I serve it as part of a multi-course dinner, and for the two of us, I roast a pint of tomatoes and allocate about 10 ciliegine per portion. I also go lightly with basil, based on my personal preference regarding the balance of flavors. You can adjust each element according to your taste. Also, in the absence of bite-sized mozzarella, you can use sliced mozzarella balls.