This colourful, crunchy appetizer is served on slices of oil-rubbed toasted bread topped with fresh tomatoes, basil, and garlic.
Bruschetta (Pronounced “brusketta”) is easy to put together, which makes it a fool-proof appetizer to prepare at the last minute.
It is easy to adapt bruschetta to any season.
Tomatoes and basil make the following version summery, but try using hearty mushrooms in the fall, marinated black olives or artichoke hearts in the winter, or bright asparagus in the spring.
Bread is one of the main ingredients in this recipe, so you will want to shop for just the right loaf.
Crusty Italian bread will work best such as Pugliese bread or “casareccio” bread, cut into thick slices of 1-2 centimetres wide.
In the market, you can buy already sliced loaves ready for the bruschetta, perfect if you can’t find the right Italian bread.
In my opinion, the best bread for bruschetta is Pane casareccio di Genzano IGP
Its origins are from the tradition of preparing bread at home.
Once prepared with natural yeasts and then shaped into loaves, the dough is then baked in wood-fired ovens.
Ingredients (serves 4)
Preparation time: 10 minutes Cooking time: 10 minutes
- 2 garlic cloves
- 2 to 3 whole ripe tomatoes or 10 to 12 cherry or grape tomatoes
- 5 or 6 fresh basil leaves
- 4 large slices bread, such as Italian bread
- ⅓ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- sea salt
- freshly ground black pepper (optional)
- Slightly crush the garlic by laying the flat side of a chef’s knife on the clove and pressing firmly to break open the skin. Remove the skin and set aside.
- Wash the tomatoes, cut out the stem circle at the top and discard. Chop the tomatoes into bite-size chunks. Place in a medium-size bowl and set aside.
- Wash the basil leaves, shake to remove the excess water, and dry the sprigs by rolling them in paper towels. Tear the basil leaves into small pieces and set aside.
Get set . . .
- Lay the bread slices on a baking tray and toast under a broiler for 1 to 2 minutes on each side until golden and crispy. Be careful not to burn them. The bread is best toasted on a barbecue, but it can also be done in a griddle pan for ease at home.
- Remove the slices. Rub one side with the garlic clove.
- On top of each slice, spoon the chopped tomatoes and basil.
- Drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with the sea salt and, if you like, freshly ground black pepper to taste.
- Serve warm