Monday, April 30, 2012

Meatless Monday: Bruschetta

I have made Bruschetta a few times, but this time I have really outdone myself!  Actually, I should probably give my mom credit for this HUGE discovery.  What is the HUGE discovery, you ask?  Bread.  All this time, I have been using baguettes to make bruschetta.  Then one day my mom brought over a big loaf of Italian bread from Whole Foods and now I will never use anything else to make bruschetta.  When I used baguettes, the bread became so hard that it was difficult to bite into and all the toppings fell off easily.  But when I used the big loaf of Italian bread, the bread was adequately toasted so that it was firm but not hard to bite into and the toppings stayed nicely in place.  Bruchetta perfection!  My favorite bruschetta recipe comes from Simply Recipes.  Let's get started!


4-5 tomatoes on the vine
2 or 3 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
10 fresh basil leaves, chopped.
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 loaf of Italian bread
¼ cup olive oil
¼ cup grated parmesan cheese


1.  Adjust oven rack to the second to the top position and preheat oven to 450°F.
2.  While the oven is heating, chop the tomatoes, garlic and basil. 

3.  Put tomatoes, garlic, 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil and 1 tsp vinegar in a bowl and mix.  Add the chopped basil.   Add salt and pepper to taste.

4.  Slice your bread on a diagonal about ½ inch thick slices. Place bread on a foil covered baking sheet and coat one side of each slice with olive oil using a pastry brush. 
5.  Flip the bread on the baking sheet so that the olive oil side is facing down. You will want to toast them in the top rack in your oven, so you may need to do these in batches depending on the size of your oven. Once the oven has reached 450°F, place a tray of bread slices in the oven on the top rack. Toast for 5-6 minutes, until the bread just begins to turn golden brown.

6.  Remove the bread from the oven and flip it so the olive oil side is facing up. Spoon the tomato topping onto the bread slices and top with Parmesan cheese.
7.  Place in the oven for 1-2 minutes so the tomato topping and cheese are heated through.
8.  Slice the pieces in half and serve immediately.

You can freeze the leftover Italian bread or it makes for yummy toast with jam or jelly too!

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