Burrata Caprese

There is Caprese salad, and then there is Sassella’s Burrata Caprese salad. Chef Cristian Pontiggia starts with house-made burrata, pairs it with local heirloom tomatoes, adds capers for a sharp punch as well as a swirl of walnut basil pesto, and finishes it with a garnish of Hawaiian basil, tangerine Calabrian chile oil (a game-changing ingredient), dehydrated garlic, volcanic black salt, and balsamic pearls that he creates. It’s a dish that speaks to both the eyes and the stomach in equal measure. To drink, he suggests a Brunello di Montalcino: “Strong on flavor, but with the burrata, a perfect pairing.”

Burrata Caprese Recipe


1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp tangerine juice, freshly squeezed
2 tbsp pesto
1 heirloom tomato, sliced
1 ball of burrata
2 caper berries
4-5 small basil leaves
½ tsp balsamic pearls* or a drizzle of balsamic vinegar
Black volcanic salt
Crispy garlic


  1. Combine the olive oil and tangerine juice.
  2. Spread the pesto on a plate, arrange the tomato slices then top with the burrata, and drizzle with infused oil.
  3. Garnish with caper berries, basil leaves, balsamic pearls or balsamic vinegar, a generous sprinkle of volcanic salt, and some crispy garlic.

Recipe by Chef Cristian Pontiggia of Sassella / Story and Styling by Julia Platt Leonard / Support from Alex Hanna / Photography by Kate Russell

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