Black pepper, strawberry and buffalo mozzarella crostini

By: Nikki and Jordan Shearer

Celebrate the warm weather with these delicious, bite sized black pepper, strawberry and buffalo mozzarella crostini from MasterChef NZ runners-up Nikki and Jordan Shearer

Strawberry -2

Makes approximately 18 crostini

On MasterChef, we often referred to the pursuit of ‘the perfect mouthful’; the combination of single ingredients that, when put together, create a taste sensation in one single bite.

Consisting of sweet roasted strawberries, tangy balsamic vinegar, the heat of black pepper, the freshness of thyme and radishes, topped with creamy mozzarella, this simple dish epitomises the idea of ‘the perfect mouthful.’


  • 1 punnet of strawberries, sliced
  • 2 tsp cracked black pepper
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • Handful of fresh thyme, finely chopped (reserve some leaves for garnish)
  • 18 crostini (small slices of bread, brushed with olive oil and toasted)
  • 3 radishes, finely sliced 
  • 125g buffalo mozzarella, roughly torn
  • Balsamic crema
  • Salt and pepper


  1. Heat oven to 180°C.
  2. Combine the first five ingredients and spread on a small baking tray. 
  3. Roast for 15 minutes, tossing a couple of times.
  4. Allow to cool.
  5. To assemble, top crostini with sliced radish, a teaspoon of strawberry mixture, some torn mozzarella and thyme leaves. 
  6. Garnish with flaky sea salt, cracked black pepper and a drizzle of balsamic crema.

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