Caprese Three Ways (For Any Season!)

Tomato season is winding down which makes me really, really sad. Mostly because there’s this small window in Connecticut (from August through September) where tomatoes are farm fresh. When tomato season ends, usually caprese season ends! Caprese – which is classically fresh tomato, mozzarella and basil – is one of my favorite Italian appetizers.

Pre-COVID, I was so blessed to be able to travel quite a few times to Italy, where I’d intentionally seek out caprese at almost every restaurant we went to because it was always SO delicious. At one restaurant on the Amalfi Coast, I had caprese three ways (fresh tomato, roasted tomato, and sundried tomato), and it changed my perspective on the dish forever.

Instead of caprese being limited to the summer season when tomatoes are fresh, sweet and juicy, these different takes on caprese made it accessible regardless of the season. It was genius, and so good. I just had to make it when I got back to the states!

 

 

 

Makes: 4 servings

Prep time: 20 minutes

Cook time: 40 minutes

Total time: 1 hour

The Ingredients

Fresh Tomato Caprese (Best in Summer)

2 large, ripe heirloom tomatoes

1 ovoline-sized fresh cow’s milk mozzarella ball, room temperature

Balsamic glaze/reduction, to drizzle

Fresh basil

Coarse salt

Roasted Tomato Caprese (Best Any Time of Year)

~12 cherry tomatoes, cut in half

1 ovoline-sized fresh buffalo milk mozzarella ball, room temperature

Dried (or fresh) oregano

Extra virgin olive oil

Salt

Sundried Tomato & Ricotta Caprese (Best Any Time of Year)

1 small jar sundried tomatoes in olive oil

½ cup whole milk ricotta

4 slices good quality crusty sourdough or white bread, toasted

Fresh (or dried) basil

 

 

The Steps

Fresh Tomato Caprese (Best in Summer)

Core tomatoes by running knife in a circular motion around the stem end, pulling the core out with your hand.

Cut tomatoes and mozzarella into thick slices. Layer tomato and mozzarella on a plate, alternating between tomato and mozzarella slices.

Drizzle with balsamic glaze, and garnish with basil and a sprinkle of coarse salt.

Roasted Tomato Caprese (Best Any Time of Year)

Preheat oven to 275 degrees for slow roasted juicy roasted tomatoes (or 350 degrees if you’re in a rush!).

Place halved cherry tomatoes cut-side up on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive, and sprinkle with salt and dried oregano. Bake in oven for 1 hour (275 degrees) or 30 minutes (350 degrees).

Remove roasted tomatoes from oven and let rest for 10 minutes.

Slice buffalo mozzarella on a plate and top with roasted cherry tomatoes. Garnish with dried or fresh oregano and drizzle with olive oil.

Sundried Tomato & Ricotta Caprese (Best Any Time of Year)

Spread a generous layer of ricotta on toasted crusty bread.

Drain sundried tomatoes and cut into thin slices. Sprinkle slices on ricotta.

Top with fresh or dried basil.

 

The Steps with Video

YouTube video

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