Fresh Tomato Sauce with Bocconcini & Garlic Bread

There  are only three things in life that are certain: death, taxes and me consuming as many tomatoes as humanly possible during August and September. So, it should come to you as no surprise that over the past two weeks I have been cooking with lots of fresh tomatoes. This recipe here was crafted over the last few weeks with the help of my sister. The idea came to us after we had bought nearly 8lbs of fresh tomatoes and were deciding what to do with them. 

This recipe is almost like a delicious deconstructed pizza. Each bite brings a delicious explosion of melted bocconcini with savory fresh tomatoes all on crispy, buttery garlic bread. A few notes before we get into it: I would say that fresh, juicy heirloom tomatoes packed with flavour will do the best in this recipe. As well, I would highly recommend trying to buy bocconcini made with authentic buffalo milk. I tried the recipe with both cow’s milk cheese as well as buffalo milk cheese and to me, the buffalo milk cheese was worth the premium. Hopefully you enjoy the recipe as much as my sister and I did and go support your local farmers!

Active time:

Cook time:

Ingredients:

  • 2 shallots, minced
  • 8-10 cloves of garlic, smashed
  • 2 lbs tomatoes, diced
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 4-5 slices of favourite bread (baguette recommended as well)
  • 25g grated parmesan
  • 1 large bunch basil
  • ½ lbs bocconcini, cut in half
  • Salt and pepper

Directions:

  1. Prep all of the vegetables for cooking, including the shallots, garlic and tomatoes.
  2. Heat a large, oven safe dutch oven on medium low heat. Add in the olive oil; when hot sauté the shallots and ⅔ of the garlic for about 4-5 minutes until they begin to soften and become fragrant. Next add in the tomatoes, ½ tsp of salt and fresh ground black pepper. Simmer the tomato sauce for about 10-15 minutes until enough juice has evaporated such that the consistency begins to resemble a liquidy tomato sauce. The length of time required to simmer will vary greatly based on the juiciness of the tomatoes used. 
  3. While the tomato sauce simmers, heat a small non-stick pan on medium low. Once hot, add in the butter and the rest of the garlic and sauté for 3-4 minutes stirring frequently until the garlic begins to turn golden. Turn off the heat and set aside. 
  4. Get your bread slices, lather on the butter and garlic mixture evenly across all of your bread and set onto a baking sheet. 
  5. Once the tomato sauce has finished simmering, set the oven to broil high. Add the parmesan and the basil into the sauce, ripping the basil into shreds as you do so. Taste for salt and pepper and adjust.
  6. Gently place the bocconcini into the sauce, trying not to let them get submerged in the liquid. Gently place the sauce into the oven so as to not disturb the bocconcini you so carefully placed. Broil for a few minutes until the cheese begins to bubble and brown. Remove from the oven, cover and set aside. 
  7. Next, put the garlic bread into the oven to toast. This should only take a few minutes, so be attentive to the bread while it is in there. Remove once golden. Enjoy immediately by serving the sauce into bowls and scooping out with the garlic bread, enjoy!

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