I am so happy right now because the tomatoes in our garden are finally ripening. And that means making bruschetta. It is my favorite thing to do with the garden tomatoes. They have so much flavor, and since tomatoes are the star of bruschetta, it is the perfect thing to use them for. If you close your eyes while eating bruschetta, it is like experiencing all the good things of summer in one bite. The basil in it gives it such a fresh taste. And anything that has garlic and basil in it has got to be good.
There are many versions of bruschetta out there, and I have combined a few to make what seems to me the best one. Part of the process involves rubbing fresh garlic over the bread after it is toasted. I have tried doing this and not doing it, and it makes a difference in the taste if you don’t do it. Also, be sure to drain the tomatoes. Otherwise, the juice from the tomatoes dilutes the vinegar/olive oil mixture, and again, it is not quite as flavorful.
I hope you love this as much as we do. I think I could eat this every night for dinner. And quite often we have. It is a great appetizer when you have company over as well. Just be sure to double the recipe, as it goes quickly. You also might not want to breathe hard on anybody if you have been eating it, due to the fresh garlic. It is so worth it though, garlic breath and all.
2 1/2 c tomato, diced (using red and yellow tomatoes makes a colorful presentation but is optional)
- 2 garlic cloves, minced, plus a few more cloves for coating the bread
- 2 Tbsp. fresh basil, chopped, plus more for garnishing
- 1 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
- 1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. pepper
- 1 loaf French or Italian bread
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
- After you dice the tomatoes, place in a colander to drain.
- While tomatoes are draining, slice bread into 1/4 inch slices.
- Place bread slices on a cookie sheet, and bake for 10 minutes, or until golden brown. Cool.
- When bread slices are baked, brush thin layer of olive oil over each piece.
- Cut a piece of garlic in half, and using cut end, scrape over top of bread crusts just to flavor the bread. Use as many pieces of garlic as you need to scrape garlic juice over bread slices, but be sure to save 2 for the bruschetta sauce.
- Stir the tomatoes in the colander to get out any last juice, then pour into a medium size bowl.
- Stir 2 minced cloves of garlic into the tomatoes.
- Pour the vinegar, oil, bail, salt, and pepper over the tomato mixture. Stir to mix.
- Garnish with a little more basil. Serve bread and bruschetta mixture separately so the bread doesn’t get soggy. Refrigerate any leftovers.
Recipe adapted from She Wears Many Hats.