This is one of my favourite apps in the summer when basil is readily available, but if you can find fresh basil and some good looking cherry tomatoes in the winter it makes a pretty, seasonal coloured appetizer for a Christmas party.
Mini San Marzano tomatoes are my favourite variety of cherry tomato. If you happen to come across them, you must buy them. They are SO full of incredible, rich tomato flavour, much like their namesake, the San Marzano tomato.
You can generally find balsamic reduction in most grocery stores these days. I actually didn’t use a reduction for the photo, as I happen to have a good quality balsamic that is fairly thick, though not quite as viscous as a proper balsamic reduction, but it did the trick.
Bocconcini is a mild unripened mozzarella cheese. They come in a variety of sizes, and sometimes you can find them in slices as well. For this recipe, use the mini ones so they don’t overwhelm the tomatoes.
Time: 10 min
You will need:
- about 20-22 mini bocconcini (this is usually about how many come in the container)
- 10-11 cherry tomatoes, preferably mini San Marzano’s if you can find them
- fresh basil, about 15-20 leaves
- balsamic reduction
- fresh ground pepper
- toothpicks -make sure you use plain and not mint or cinnamon!
Drain mini bocconcini and pat dry with a paper towel. Cut cherry tomatoes in half. If your basil leaves are particularly large, you can halve those as well.
Assemble your caprese bites! Slide one bocconcini onto the toothpick, follow with a leaf of basil, folded in half if desired, and then slide the halved cherry tomato on last, cut side down so they will sit nicely on a plate. Alternatively, if your basil leaves are quite large, halve them lengthwise, halve the bocconcini and wrap the basil leaf around them.
Drizzle with balsamic reduction and a grind of fresh pepper to finish.