The sun does more for tomatoes than dry them out. According to Food & Wine, leaving tomatoes in the sun for roughly thirty minutes warms them through, releasing juices and enhancing their sweetness. This technique works well enough for Caprese salads, but for the days you don’t want to combat the bugs or the cold, there’s an easier way to achieve the same effect.
“My favorite thing right now is grilling my tomatoes for Caprese salad,” DeLaurentiis told Food & Wine. Rather than biding her time so the tomatoes can ripen in the sun, DeLaurentiis skips ahead and takes matters into her own hands. To maximize your Caprese salad, slice your tomato into thick slices, add olive oil and seasonings, and place them on the grill. You only need twenty seconds total to grill the tomatoes through.
For the final step, DeLaurentiis recommends laying the still-hot tomatoes between each slab of mozzarella. With such proximity, the cheese melts, and you’ve turned a traditionally cold course into something folks will want multiple helpings of.