Spring. It’s trying really hard these days to make an appearance, although the chilly temperatures make it hard to believe what the calendar tells us. At least the snow is nearly all gone (except in dark corners that rarely see the sun!) and the sun is more present than it was even just a few weeks ago. And hey, it’s nearly Easter. How did that happen? Not that I am complaining – Easter typically signals new beginnings, a new, warmer season and, if you’re a teacher in the northern hemisphere, the beginning of “the end” – it’s all crazy busy from hereon in. It also signals an extra long weekend and, for many, sharing meals with friends and family. Often that signals a flurry of activity in the kitchen and “big meal” stress but entertaining really doesn’t need to be stressful – some of my favourite get-togethers are more casual affairs, a brunch, for example, or an early dinner with less traditional Easter foods and more of an emphasis on sharing time and food with friends that making “the right” dishes for the occasion.
For this month’s Kraft Canada #whatscooking assignment, I was perusing the Easter recipes for ideas for casual entertaining over the Easter weekend (or, you know, anytime!) and couldn’t stop thinking about these mini margherita pizzas. What a great idea for entertaining – they are fabulous little hors d’oeuvre bites or they can be transformed into a larger dish for a casual brunch. I made a few changes – namely switching out the pizza dough for puff pastry (store bought – shh, don’t tell anyone!) and slow-roasting the tomatoes.
I had found some fabulous little cherry tomatoes…
And roasted them for an hour at a fairly high temperature. I stopped after an hour so they kept their shape, knowing they would be cooking more on top of the pizza
What's Cooking? Slow-roasted tomato and mozzarella pizza
Easy slow-roasted tomato and mozzarella pizza.
- 16 cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- salt, pepper and olive oil
- 1 roll puff pastry, thawed
- 250g fresh mozzarella, drained and thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons Kraft 100% Parmesan Grated Cheese
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- Fresh basil leaves, roughly chopped, for garnish
- Pre-heat oven to 400ºF.
- Toss the cherry tomato halves with the olive oil, salt, pepper and garlic.
- Spread the tomato halves on a baking tray lined with parchment paper.
- Bake for 1 hour.
- Remove from oven and allow to come to room temperature.
- Meanwhile, unroll the puff pastry and place it on a baking tray lined with parchment paper.
- Evenly place the mozzarella slices around the pastry, leaving a border around 2-3cm wide.
- Top the mozzarella with the tomatoes and sprinkle with the Parmesan.
- Fold the uncovered edges of dough up and around the filling, working your way around the pizza. You'll end up with pleated edges that are a little rough but that's ok!
- Brush the edges of the pastry with a little of the beaten egg (egg wash) and bake for 25-30 minutes or until the cheese has melted and the edges of the pizza are puffed and golden.
- Sprinkle with basil to serve.
Verdict? This is a really simple dish that tastes like you’ve spent much longer in the kitchen than you have! A perfect light lunch or brunch dish or, if you prefer, sliced and served with apéritifs. The extra effort to slow-roast the tomatoes is well worth it, so don’t be tempted to skip that step!
Disclosure: As a Kraft Canada #whatscooking contributor, I receive compensation for writing these posts, however, all opinions are 100% my own.