Monday, July 9, 2007

The Near Perfect Food


I truly believe tomatoes do not belong in sandwiches; really, they just make everything soggy. Tomatoes are fine in salads and pastas because everything is already wet. In my mind, tomatoes go from being a meal accessory to the star of the show in one dish - bruschetta.

It is nearly the perfect food. I say "nearly" because there are some other top contenders out there: ice cream, grilled chicken burritos, homemade granola with vanilla yogurt, Chicago style pizza... bruschetta is definitely in the top 10 though. Actually, it should probably be in the top 5 because it is soooo healthy. When you think about it, is there really anything else that is as healthy as this tomato mixture and still tastes so good? Honestly, I can eat (our) bruschetta until I get hives.

Bruschetta is one of those foods that is easily customized to specific tastes. Some people add a little extra basil, some go wild with the garlic, ahem - mom, and others add crazy things like olives, cheese, or, gasp, red peppers.

Here is our version:

Tomato Mixture
Sous chef Sam (gotta give him credit) cut up about five of the best looking on the vine store bought tomatoes you have ever seen into a medium dice.

Added about a 1/4 cup of fresh basil. I like to use the stack, roll and cut approach here - you get a nice chiffonade cut and you don't have basil stuck to every surface of the kitchen.

Mixed in about 3 tbs Extra Virgin Olive Oil, or EVOO for all of you Rachel Ray fans.

Pressed 1/2 clove of fresh garlic and saved the other half for rubbing on the toast. Yes, just 1/2 clove, so as not to OVERPOWER the other flavors - mom.

Salt to taste.

A pinch of sugar is needed to bring out the flavor of tomatoes.

Lastly, the ingredient we add that makes my mother cringe - balsamic vinegar about 1 tbs.

Mix it all together and let sit while you get the toast ready.

Toasts
Sliced the Zingerman's sourdough bread into 1/2 inch thick slices and rubbed them with a clove of garlic that had been cut in half.

Sprayed both sides with Extra Virgin Olive Oil via my Misto.

Sprinkled a little salt on the bread.

Grilled the bread slices on my cast iron griddle and smoked up the house.

Toasted the bread until golden and crispy around the edges, but not hockey pucks.

Assemble like so:

9 comments:

david santos said...

Thanks for you work and have a good week

jbrealtor said...

Love, love, love this stuff. Could eat a whole bowl with or without the bread. Yummo as RR would say

restyled home said...

You've inspired me!! I want some bruschetta now, so I went to the supermarket and bought some from the deli (I know...lazy), a baguette, some linguine and two delicious looking pasta sauces, both cream based. Tomorrow will be pasta night. I can hardly wait!!

Linda

cammyk said...

Heather, I too love bruschetta and yours looks amazing.

Of course you can add my name to your blog list. I would like to add yours as well. You have a beautiful and inspiring blog! Cammy

Splaneyo said...

Linda,
You will have to give us a review! Enjoy.

Heather

About Us said...

MMMMM.... Make my mouth water. I will have to put that on the menu for next week!

Greenie Gardens said...

Garlic is good!

Cherdecor said...

I'm new here but I like your blog. I must find some bruschetta. I have never heard of it before, but I like to try new foods. Thanks for sharing.

Splaneyo said...

Hi All,
Thanks for the nice comments - I am glad you enjoyed the post. I hope you will all walking around with
bruschetta breath soon.

Heather