Thursday, March 4, 2010

Can't-wait-for-the-good-tomatoes Bruschetta

Maybe because it was a "balmy" 6 C today... or maybe because I am so unbelievably over winter that I am trying to will it to be summer... I wanted something fresh for dinner. And that became the I-can't-wait-for-good-produce bruschetta.

Is there really a recipe for bruschetta?? Well.... I don't think so. A bit of this, a bit of that. Stir. Eat. Easy.


Olive Oil
Balsamic Vinegar
Salt + Pepper

For interest's sake, however, here are a few things that I think make all the difference between that store-bought schlock and a bruschetta that actually reminds you of summer when the summer is but a memory. Here's my how-to.

Good bread is a non-negotiable. (A fortuitous layover in San Francisco gave me a chance to bring home a wonderful loaf of Boudin sourdough... so that's my bread of choice this time!) But don't just dump the slices in the toaster! Take an extra minute and take a piece of peeled garlic and rub it all over each side of each piece of bread followed by a quick, erratic drizzle of olive oil over the pieces. Then bake on a cookie sheet in the oven (maybe 250-300 C) until it reaches a crispness that you are happy with. I like the bread to be a little soft and chewy in the centre.. some like it to be a bit crisper. Do what you want.

For the tomatoes, get rid of the seeds and juice. The oil and vinegar add enough to the mix. The tomato juice just makes things soupy. I chop with very little precision. Just a rough chop and toss it all in a bowl.

Tear the basil. Don't get fussy. I like that the pieces don't match and every bite is a different arrangement of the different parts. Add to the bowl too.

As with the bread, you need good olive oil. Cold pressed, close to the source. Enjoy it. And with the vinegar, some use wine vinegar.. I still love my balsamic. At the risk of seeming unhelpful, it's a lot about preference in terms of amounts. If I use a teaspoon of oil, I probably use a 1/4 teaspoon of balsamic.

A slight smattering of salt, a crack or two of pepper.


Here's my I-dream-of-summer brushetta...
with fresh mozzarella and Boudin sourdough.

Cooking... well, eating music today. Kick Drum Heart... a surprise mix CD from the maestro @agrabia. What a great surprise... thanks, friend.

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