Pronounced broo-sket-ta, it is another preparation of Italian cuisine that has been adopted and modified the world over. In its basic form, it is a slice of grilled Italian bread, rubbed with garlic, sprinkled with salt and pepper and drizzled with olive oil. The bread was traditionally roasted on a brustolina grill. It is a wonderful accompaniment for red wine, as it brings out its flavor. These days the term bruschetta has come to signify garlic toast topped with diced tomatoes.
Italian Tomato Bruschetta
- 1 loaf crusty baguette
- 8 medium-sized tomatoes (diced)
- ½ red onion (diced)
- 3 garlic cloves (crushed)
- ¼ cup fresh basil (finely chopped)
- ½ cup balsamic vinegar
- ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- In a large bowl, mix the chopped onions, tomatoes, garlic, and basil.
- Add the balsamic vinegar and extra virgin olive oil. Then, add the salt and pepper to taste. Cover it and refrigerate for at least an hour. This will allow the flavors to soak and blend together.
- Slice the baguette loaf diagonally, into thick slices. Now, toast the slices till they are light brown on both sides.
- Serve the chilled mixture on the warm slices of bread.
Italian Bruschetta with Red Bell Peppers and Corn
- 1 loaf Italian or French bread
- ¼ cup olives (chopped)
- 4-5 sprigs fresh basil leaves (chopped)
- 1 red bell pepper (finely chopped)
- 2 medium-sized plum tomatoes (de-seeded and finely chopped)
- 1 tsp. rosemary, fresh or dried (optional)
- 1 corn ear (boiled)
- Mozzarella cheese (sliced)
- 2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
- 4 garlic cloves
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Salt as per taste
- Diagonally slice the loaf of bread into thick slices. Roast the bread on the grill till golden brown. Rub the garlic cloves on the slices and drizzle a bit of extra virgin olive oil onto them.
- Cut the corn from the cob. Mix the basil leaves, remaining olive oil, rosemary, tomatoes, olives, corn, and red bell pepper together. Season the mixture with salt and pepper.
- Set the oven to 350 °F. Spread the mixture on each slice of bread and cover it with a slice of mozzarella cheese. Slide the slices into the oven till the cheese melts.
- Your scrumptious bruschetta is ready to be served!
Other popular Bruschetta Toppings
- Pesto, capers, or anchovy paste
- Marinated artichoke hearts
- Sautéed wild mushrooms
- Cannellini bean dip
- Hot Italian peppers with feta cheese
- Thin slivers of Parmigiano Romano
- Grilled eggplant, goat cheese, and basil oil
- Porcini mushrooms (in season) with lemon juice and truffle oil
- Mascarpone and figs (in season), topped with a thin slice of prosciutto
- Small cocktail shrimp sautéed with garlic, olive oil, lemon, and capers
Traditionally, bruschetta was meant to be a light hors d'oeuvre. Depending on the ingredients, it may be served as a heavy snack or a side dish along with the main course. One way to prepare it is to combine it with your favorite ingredient, be it shrimp or mushroom.