Mozzarella with capsicum on crostini

Here is a colourful, Mediterranean–style dish that is very easy to make. The vegetables can be prepared in advance, and left to soak up the flavours in the dressing, then mixed with the mozzarella and piled onto freshly toasted, garlicky ciabatta bread. A perfect summer lunch.

Mozzarella with capsicum on crostini


  • 1 large bulb of fennel, about 300 g
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small red onion, halved
  • 1 red capsicum, halved and seeded
  • 1 yellow capsicum, halved and seeded
  • 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegarsalt and pepper
  • 150 g mozzarella, diced
  • 100 g mixed salad leaves
  • ¼ cup (15 g) fresh basil leaves
  • 1 ciabatta loaf, thickly sliced
  • 1 clove garlic, halved


  1. Preheat the grill to high.
  2. Cut the fennel bulb in half lengthwise, then cut each half lengthwise into 1 cm thick slices, not cutting all the way through the base so the layers remain attached.
  3. Place the halves, cut side down, on a baking tray and brush lightly with 1 tablespoon of the oil.
  4. Put the onion halves and capsicums, cut side down, on the baking tray.
  5. Grill the vegetables for 10–15 minutes, turning once, until the fennel is golden brown and the capsicums and onions are tender and blackened in places.
  6. Transfer the vegetables to a chopping board (leave the grill on).
  7. Pour any juices from the baking tray into a small bowl and whisk in the remaining 2 tablespoons oil and the vinegar.
  8. Season this dressing with salt and pepper to taste.
  9. Thickly slice the capsicums and onion.
  10. Cut through the base of the fennel halves to separate the slices.
  11. Put all the vegetables in a mixing bowl.
  12. Pour over the dressing and toss well to coat the vegetables evenly.
  13. Add the mozzarella, salad leaves and basil to the bowl, piling them on top of the vegetables (do not toss together yet).
  14. Spread out the ciabatta slices on a clean baking tray and toast under the grill for 2–3 minutes, or until golden on both sides.
  15. Rub one side of each slice with the cut surface of the garlic clove.
  16. Toss the mozzarella, leaves and vegetables to mix them together, then pile on top of the ciabatta toasts.
  17. Serve immediately.

Serves 4
Preparation: 30 minutes
Cooking: about 15 minutes


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