Burrata with chargrilled grapes and basil is from Ottolenghi Simple. This delicate and delicious little dish could grace either end of the meal, a starter or desert.
Burrata – which means “buttered” in Italian – is one of life’s great pleasures. The outside is firm mozzarella, the inside an oozy nomination of stacciatella and cream. The combination of the two is unsurprisingly good. Burrata can be paired with all sorts of flavours – citrus fruit or juice, sweet balsamic, peppery rocket, toasted spices.
Here sweet red grapes are skewered and chargrilled : a method which is as simple as it is impressive. If you want to get ahead, marinate the grapes in the fridge for up to 1 day before grilling. If you can’t get hold of burrata, balls of buffalo mozzarella make an absolutely fine alternative.
Serves 6 as a generous starter.
About 320 g seedless red grapes, pulled off the vine
2 tbsp Valdespino Vinegar
3 tbsp olive oil
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 1/2 tsp soft dark brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp fennel seeds, toasted and lightly crushed
3 large balls of burrata or buffalo mozzarella
6 small red or green basil sprigs
flaked sea salt and black pepper
!. Put the grapes in a medium bowl with the vinegar oil, garlic sugar, 1 teaspoon of fennel seeds, 1/4 teaspoon of flaked salt and plenty of paper. Mix well and set aside. Skewer and grapes on to sticks: ou want about five or six on each stick. Don’t show away the marinade; you’ll need this when serving.
2. Place chargrill pan on a high heat and ventilate your kitchen well. Once hot, add the grape sticks in batches and grill for about 2-3 minutes, turning halfway through. Remove from the heat.
3. When ready to serve, tear the balls of burrata in half and place one half on each plate. Arrange the grape sticks to lean against them – two per portion – and spoon 1 1/2 teaspoons of the marinade over the cheese. Alternatively, arrange on a platter to serve a crowd. Sprinkle with the remaining fennel seeds, garnish with a sprig of basil and serve.
Japanese black plate from MH Ceramics link below.
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