Heirloom Tomato Bruschetta
Tomatoes, particularly heirloom tomatoes, invoke in me a guttural “ummmm.” They are just so yummy at this rare time of year when you visit the farmer’s market and you can’t get out of there without buying at least 3 different types. When you get one of “those” tomatoes, it is simply ridiculous to do anything other than just serve them as raw and simple as they deserve to be delivered. I suppose this is my slightly passive aggressive way of saying that this recipe below is one of those that you can probably find in any cookbook, but there is a very simple reason why. Sometimes fresh ingredients don’t need invention. They just need to be assembled. This is exactly what I did last night for my guests, making this little starter to get the palette primed.
Layer 1. I started with some peasant bread — although I am sure any multi-grain variety will do. Slice it pretty thin and aim for about 3/4 inch squared pieces. I took a tbsp of olive oil and brushed it on, dusting it with a bit of garlic powder and sea salt before putting it in at 375 for about 12- 15 minutes until slightly browned and crispy.
Layer 2. Very thinly sliced mozzarella. Aim to fit the bread you are laying it on, adding fresh sea salt on top.
Layer 3. I chopped and deseeded an heirloom tomato that was ridiculously boring in the sense that it was red and not purple or orange. but it was ripe and that was what mattered to me. Then I minced a clove of garlic and chopped 2 tbsp of fresh basil and tossed it with some olive oil and balsamic vinegar and salt and pepper.
The collection was marvelously superb. Unoriginal? Perhaps. But whatevs.
I must say that you need to think bite-sized the whole way through because the goal is to get it in your mouth with a little crunch. You don’t want your guests looking like chipmunks, unable to talk for 2 minutes. You get my drift.
- Peasant Bread (or some multi-grain bread), thinly sliced in 20 pieces (roughly ¾ inch square)
- 2 tsp to 1 tbsp olive oil (to brush on bread)
- ¼ tsp garlic powder
- sea salt to taste
- 1 heirloom tomato
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 2 tbsp fresh basil, chopped
- 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- ½ lb fresh mozzarella, thinly sliced in ¾ inch square pieces (to match bread)
- Ground sea salt and ground pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- Slice peasant bread thinly and then into ¾ inch square pieces. Put in oven and cook until slightly browned and crisp.
- Brush lightly with olive oil and dust with garlic powder and sea salt.
- Chop and deseed one heirloom tomato into a fine chop.
- Add garlic, fresh basil, olive oil, balsalmic vinegar and salt and pepper to taste.
- Assemble bread, fresh mozzarella and tomato mixture and serve.