Let’s just start this off with a confession: I do not like tomatoes. Well, I don’t like raw tomatoes or big chunks of them permeating my delicious food. Which, absolutely, means that I put my spaghetti sauce through the blender and pick out the tomato chunks from my chili. There’s something about the smell/texture that really makes me want to gag. Especially the raw ones, I just cannot get into the appeal of those suckers.
With that in mind, I also don’t like being a picky eater (which I am proud to say I’ve made great progress on), so I’m always trying to find ways to like the food that have found themselves on the “yeah, not going to happen” list. Here’s where this bruschetta comes in. For starters, it’s amazeballs delicious, as in there’s a very real risk that you’ll find yourself hovering over the skillet, shoveling down toast point after toast point until mysteriously there’s nothing left to eat, let alone share. And, to my credit, it has not been put through the blender, which is a win on the de-pickifying my eating habits.
Ready for the deliciousness? Here’s what you do:
Take two tomatoes, slice ’em up and de-seed them (essentially squeeze out all the seeds and extra liquid).
Then give ’em the old chop — you can make these as large or small as you desire!
Then chop up two cloves of garlic (if you make more than two tomatoes, just keep in mind you’ll need one clove of garlic for each tomato).
Then, le sigh, slice up a demi-baguette (or any smallish loaf of French or Italian bread).
Lay each slice of bread out on a baking sheet and give the whole pan a little drizzle of olive oil. Then pop these guys under the broiler for a few minutes until they’re nice and golden brown.
When they come out of the oven, take a raw garlic clove and generously rub it all over — making sure each bite is covered in garlicky goodness.
Now for the star of the show – the tomatoes. Pour a tablespoon or two of olive oil into your skillet and toss in all your diced tomatoes. Let it simmer on medium for a few minutes.
You’ll notice that it’s starting to get a bit soupy, don’t panic, it’s not only normal, but it’s time to add in your chopped garlic cloves. Also, add in your salt and peppa’ for a bit of extra flavor!
Keep simmering the tomatoes and garlic until it starts to firm up, and when you move your spoon around, you should be able to see the bottom of the pan.
Here’s where it gets good. Take one of your pieces of toasty bread, slather on some tomato-y goodness, sprinkle with fresh chopped basil and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar… and enjoy the heaven that is about to enter your mouth. Holy yum.
Tomato Basil Bruschetta
Serves: 3-4 as an appetizer
2 large tomatoes
3 garlic cloves
2 T olive oil (plus more for drizzling the bread)
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
balsamic vinegar (optional)
1.) Pre-heat your broiler.
2.) Wash your tomatoes, then slice and de-seed them (squeeze out all the extra seeds and juice). Once the tomatoes are de-seeded, dice each slice into small pieces.
3.) Peel your garlic cloves and mince them (or push them through the garlic press, if you prefer).
4.) Take your demi-baguette and slice it in 1/4 inch slices and arrange them on a large baking sheet. Drizzle each slice of bread, lightly, with olive oil.
5.) Pop your bread into the oven and keep avery close eye on it because it goes from crispy to burnt very quickly.
6.) Once the bread has crisped up and taken on a golden color, pull them out of the oven. Take your third, garlic clove and generously rub it all over the surface of each slice of bread. The bread is officially done!
7.) Grab a skillet and set the heat to medium, add 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil to the pan. Once the olive oil is warm add your tomatoes. After a minute or two add in the two, minced garlic cloves as well as the salt and pepper. The tomatoes will look very wet and soupy — this is totally normal.
8.) Continue cooking the tomatoes on medium for about 10 minutes or until the tomatoes begin to condense and take on a much thicker appearance.
9.) To assemble: take a piece of toasted bread, slather it with the garlicky-tomato mixture, top each slice with chopped basil and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar.
10.) Enjoy, and be ready for this to be requested at each and every potluck you attend in the future.