Bruschetta with Fresh Tomatoes and Basil

Bruschetta

Bruschetta—a plate of bread slices topped with fresh seasoned tomatoes—is one of our favorite appetizers. It’s an exquisite way to begin a meal of Italian food, but it’s also a great starter for any table.

We’d only had bruschetta at restaurants until we found this recipe, a perfect prescription for using all of the fresh homegrown tomatoes family members share with us each summer.

Fresh tomatoes grown throughout the summer in home gardens are far superior to the varieties we find in grocery stores. So when we receive a bounty of bright, juicy tomatoes in the summer we make the most of them!

We also love making Tomato Pie by this very good recipe from the now-closed restaurant Grits & Groceries in Belton, South Carolina.

After one plate of this bruschetta recipe, we decided we won’t be ordering it as often at restaurants anymore. Why should we when we can make it just as tastily at home?

For full disclosure, I will tell you that I omitted a step to making bruschetta in the recipe below that was included in most I came across in both printed and digital cookbooks. It appears many chefs blanch (cooking briefly in hot water) and peel tomatoes before cutting them for use in bruschetta. I decided that was unnecessary, and I suggest you just thoroughly wash your tomatoes and remove any undesired outer pieces.

The combination of seasonings for the tomatoes are a hybrid of ingredients I found in other recipes and that we pretty much always keep in our kitchen. Of course, as with all #FoodieScore recipes, you can adjust to suit your tastes.

Most importantly, enjoy your flavorful tomatoes, and savor this dish! You might feel like you’re dining in a restaurant when you take your first bite.

 

Bruschetta

What You Need:

½ baguette fresh bread (Italian or French)

¼ cup olive oil

3-4 ripe tomatoes

3-4 fresh basil leaves, chopped

1-2 cloves fresh garlic, minced

1 T olive oil

1 t balsamic vinegar

½ t salt

¼ t black pepper

 

What You Do:

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

1. Wash, peel and dice tomatoes into small pieces, and add to medium mixing bowl.

2. Add garlic, olive oil, vinegar, basil, salt and pepper, then toss to evenly coat tomatoes.

3. Slice the baguette into pieces about a half-inch thick. Brush one side of each slice with olive oil. Place slices on a foil-covered baking pan.

4. Toast bread slices for 5 to 6 minutes, then arrange bread on a serving platter, oil-side up.

5. Top each bread slice with one spoonful of tomato mixture.

Serve! This is a hearty appetizer for 2 people or a lighter starter plate for 4 to 6.

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