Bruschetta is an Italian anti-pasti which consists of grilled bread, topped with variations of seasonal vegetable salads. The toppings usually have tomatoes as their core ingredient.
The first time I had bruschetta at an Italian restaurant, I was blown away by the freshness and also, the sheer simplicity of the bread-salad combination. The ingredients were basic but they all came together to form a dish which was an explosion on colors, flavors and textures in the mouth.
I looked up the recipe and it was so easy. You could play around with the different salad combinations, the breads as well as the dressings. It is definitely a fresh alternative to your regular salads and also a delightful quick appetizer to serve your dinner guests. Most importantly, it’s healthy! The key ingredients are the tomatoes, the basil, the crushed garlic and the olive oil. Give it a go and enjoy!
Any Italian bread or baguette
2 Plum tomatoes
4 cloves of Garlic+ 1 extra for rubbing on the bread
Garlic butter (optional)
4 tablespoons extra-virgin Olive oil
Some chopped basil leaves
Salt and pepper to taste
-Using a sharp knife, dice the tomatoes and onions as finely as you can. Put together in a bowl. If you are not a fan of raw onions, you can saute the onions in a little olive oil till they turn a bit pink and translucent. Sauteed onions contribute a lovely sweetness to the mixture.
-Roast the unpeeled garlic cloves in 3-4 drops of olive oil till you see the sides turning brown. Cool, peel and crush the garlic before adding it to the onion-tomato mixture. Keep one clove aside for rubbing on the slices later.
-Throw in some fragrant chopped basil and take in the aroma of growing deliciousness in the bowl.
-Finally, add the olive oil, salt and pepper and give the mixture a good mix. Cover with cling film and put to chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
-Preheat your oven at 200 degrees C for 10 minutes.
-Cut thick slices of the bread and lay them on the lined baking tray.
-Spread a thin layer of garlic butter on the bread slices and also sprinkle some olive-oil on top of them.
-Bake for around 7-8 mins in the oven, till you see the bread getting lightly toasted and crispy.
-Take the slices out from the oven and rub some garlic on their surface. This gives lovely flavor to the bruschetta.
-Arrange the toasted bread on a plate and use a spoon to gently top each toasted bread slice with some of the chilled tomato-onion mixture.
-Serve immediately and enjoy with a glass of wine!
-You can also serve the toasts plain with a bowl of the bruschetta mixture on the side for guests to top on their own.
-If you do top each slice individually yourself, do it right before serving as the bread slices tend to get soggy from the moisture.