Bruschetta -- an Italian delight made with the freshest of ingredients!
How do you say it? The traditional, French pronunciation is “brew - sket - ta”, but often it is incorrectly pronounced "broo - shetta." To explain, in Italian, the combination "ch" is a hard "k" sound, as in Pinocchio. Well, however you say it, one thing is agreed upon -- it is delicious!
Typically when I make bruschetta, I do not follow a recipe. But for newbies to bruschetta, amounts are usually helpful, so I have provided a basic recipe, which you can multiply accordingly. I have given the traditional method my own little twist by lightly sautéing the tomatoes and adding a little mozzarella, before popping under the broiler for a quick 2 minutes. I tell you "why" in the Variations section at the bottom of the recipe.
Serve bruschetta as a snack or as a mini pizza entree, with a fresh, green salad on the side.
When choosing your ingredients, use home-grown, grass-fed and organic ingredients whenever possible.
Yield: Makes 3-6 pieces, depending on bread size
1 - 1 ½ tsp garlic, freshly pressed
2 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
1 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
1 cup tomatoes, diced in ¼” pieces (Roma, grape or cherry)
3 TBSP fresh basil,* chopped coarsely (see directions)
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
1/8 tsp pink Himalayan salt
1/8 tsp freshly ground peppercorns
1-2 oz mozzarella cheese, grated or thinly sliced
French or Peasant Bread or baguette, as per number of desired servings
*If you are new to using fresh basil, you might want to cut this amount back to 2 TBSP.
Press garlic cloves to measure 1 or 1 ½ tsp. Add 1 TBSP olive oil and set aside.
Dice tomatoes small, approximately ¼” pieces.
Roll fresh basil leaves in tight bunch, then cut across (chiffonade), then do cross-cuts to cut into smaller pieces. Add to tomatoes.
Add balsamic vinegar, salt and freshly ground pepper to tomatoes and gently stir to mix.
Heat a small sauté pan on medium high heat, then add 1 TBSP extra virgin olive oil, followed by the tomato mixture. Watch closely; when tomatoes begin to simmer, time for 1 minute. Remove from heat.
Prepare French bread or baguette by slicing in ½” pieces, then brushing with the garlic/olive oil mixture. Add grated or thinly sliced mozzarella cheese on top of the bread. Spoon the tomato/basil mixture onto bread and place on small oven-proof pan and broil under preheated broiler for 2-3 minutes. Watch closely! Serve immediately.
Substitute flour tortillas in place of the French bread. Granted, it’s not as delicious as the French bread style – but in a pinch when you are hungry for bruschetta, you can still have it!
Add additional mozzarella cheese on top of the bread/tomato/basil mixture and then broil, to create mini pizzas. Serve with a fresh, green salad.
If desired, you can make this the traditional Italian way by using all raw ingredients (no cooking). Allow the tomato/basil mixture to rest 30 minutes to bring out the flavors. I personally like the way the flavors meld together with the quick heating in the saucepan, which also has an added health benefit: The cooking of the tomatoes helps to release a powerful antioxidant that decreases cancer and heart-disease risk.
Bruschetta - fresh, flavorful and delicious!