Roasted vine-ripened cherry tomatoes and buffalo mozzarella are a classic combination. For a colorful variation, add croutons topped with tapenade. Buy only fresh mozzarella; its creamy texture and subtle, sweet flavor melds nicely with the charred tomatoes.

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Ingredients

Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • For the cheese: In a medium shallow bowl, combine 1/4 cup olive oil with the basil, garlic, salt, and pepper. Add the mozzarella, and toss to coat well. Cover bowl, and marinate 2 hours.

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  • Slice each eggplant into eight wedges by cutting in half lengthwise and cutting each half into quarters; transfer to a medium bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together vinegar, water, sugar, and remaining 1/2 cup olive oil. Pour over eggplant, and turn to coat; cover, and transfer to refrigerator for 1 hour.

  • Preheat broiler. Remove eggplant from marinade, and shake off excess liquid. Place on baking sheet, and broil until crisp and browned, about 10 minutes. Transfer to paper towels to drain.

  • With tomatoes still on the vine, place on one end of a rimmed baking sheet. Remove mozzarella from marinade; place on baking sheet beside tomatoes. Drizzle tomatoes with marinade, and sprinkle mozzarella and tomatoes with Parmesan cheese. Broil until tomatoes burst and mozzarella has melted, about 6 minutes.

  • To serve, transfer tomatoes and mozzarella to serving platter, and place eggplant spears on the side. Garnish with balsamic vinegar.

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