Bruschetta (pronouced brus’ketta) is to an Italian as vital as a peanut butter sandwich is to an American. We may have it most days during summer, as a way to celebrate the most awaited season of tomatoes at their ripest and to use up stale bread that simply cannot be thrown out and wasted. It is a combination of simple and humble ingredients and for that it perfectly encapsulate Italian cooking at its best. In Italy we hardly ever stray from the classic combination of bread rubbed with garlic and seasoned with EVOO and salt, grilled on both sides and topped with the juiciest tomatoes you can get your hands on: San Marzano, Pachino, heirloom cherry tomatoes or the glorious oxheart variety. With their ruby-red flesh and the shape of a love heart, they turn my breakfast table into an instant feast for the eyes and the palate. Sweet consolation to the idea that the end of summer is nigh…
INGREDIENTS, serves 4
4 slices of 1 day-old sourdough
1 garlic clove, cut in half
2-3 oxheart tomatoes (depending on the size)
4 tablespoons of EVOO (or home-made basil oil)
salt to taste
basil leaves to serve
1. Place a griddle pan on the stove over high heat. You can also grill your bread on a BBQ or using the grill function in your oven.
2. Rub the bread with the cut size of the garlic.
3. Place the tomatoes on their side and slice them to your desired thickness. Season them with salt and EVOO.
4. Dip the bread slices, on both sides, in the tomato dish to soak up some of the juices. This will turn your stale slice of bread in a delightful, savory morsel once grilled.
5. Grill the bread on both sides, top with the tomatoes and basil leaves and serve as a healthy breakfast or a light lunch.