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Winter caprese

Time 30 minutes
Yields Serves 4
Winter caprese

Pesto sauce

1

Heat the oven to 325 degrees. Spread pine nuts on a baking sheet and toast in the oven for 8 to 10 minutes, until lightly browned. Let cool.

2

Using a mortar and pestle, pulverize the pine nuts, garlic, basil, parsley and salt into a smooth paste. Slowly drizzle in the olive oil and add the Parmigiano-Reggiano, mixing well to incorporate. Just before serving, season with lemon juice and additional salt to taste. Makes three-fourths cup.

Winter caprese assembly

1

Heat the oven to 200 degrees. Place the tomatoes with vines intact on a wire rack set on a baking sheet. Brush with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast 4 to 4 1/2 hours, until the skins begin to shrivel like a raisin but the tomatoes remain plump. (Sweet 100s will take considerably less time.) Remove from the oven and allow to cool to room temperature.

2

Divide the cheese evenly and place it cut side up onto four small plates. Season the cheese lightly with sea salt (skip this step if using mozzarella di bufala). Spoon 1 tablespoon of pesto sauce over each portion. Using scissors, snip a basil leaf over each portion. Top with tomatoes, divided evenly among each plate, leaving the vine intact (use scissors to cut the vine for each serving).

3

Drizzle the tomatoes with olive oil (about one-half teaspoon per serving) and serve immediately.

From Nancy Silverton and chef de cuisine Matt Molina of Pizzeria Mozza. Save extra pesto for another use. Serve with crusty bread to sop up the wonderful juices. Baby Roma tomatoes are available at Trader Joe’s stores; you can also use Sweet 100s, available at Pavilions, Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s. Burrata is available at Bristol Farms and Whole Foods stores and Bay Cities Italian Deli in Santa Monica.

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