Posted on 15 August 2007 by tomatocasual.com

Recipe: Bruschetta with Tomatoes — Direct from Italy

Recipe: Bruschetta with Tomatoes – Direct from Italy - TomatoCasual.comBy Michelle Fabio

Summertime means loads of fresh, delicious tomatoes, and here in southern Italy, that means one thing: lots of Bruschetta al Pomodoro, or Bruschetta with Tomatoes–grilled bread topped with a mix of fresh tomatoes, basil, oregano, salt, and olive oil.

But before we get to the recipe, let’s get something straight: it’s pronounced “brew-SKET-tah” not “brew-SHET-tah,” no matter what your waitress at the Olive Garden tries to tell you.

Bruschetta dates back to 15th century central Italy when olive oil makers brought bread to the mills and toasted it over a small fire as they tried to keep warm during the winter activity.

They poured their freshly made olive oil over the toasted bread, sometimes rubbing in some garlic first–and we still make bruschetta essentially the same way.

Indeed, “bruschetta” actually refers to the bread, olive oil, and garlic combination–the tomato topping came later, but it’s how most of us know this toasted bread combo today.

Bruschetta with Tomatoes
(Bruschetta al Pomodoro)

(makes 6 pieces)

6 thick slices Italian or French style bread (stale if possible)
1/4 cup best olive oil you can find
2 large, ripe tomatoes (or more if smaller), diced
2 cloves garlic, peeled and cut in half
4 large basil leaves, chopped
sprinkling of oregano and salt

Prepare the tomato mixture first to give the flavors time to blend.

A note on preparing the tomatoes, especially if they are rather juicy, you might want to give them a squeeze before dicing to get rid of excess juice; otherwise the mixture gets a little runny and messy once you try to put it on the bread.

Some also recommend cleaning out all the seeds, And if you don’t like skins, parboil the tomatoes for a minute in boiling water just removed from the burner and then peel with a sharp knife.

In a small bowl, combine tomatoes, olive oil, basil, oregano, and salt to taste. You can use either oregano or basil as well–both are not necessary. Grill or toast bread.

When the bread is toasted and still hot, rub well with the “raw” side of the garlic cloves.

Spoon the tomato mixture on top, and serve hot.

And as we say here in Italy, buon appetito!

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5 Responses to “Recipe: Bruschetta with Tomatoes — Direct from Italy”

  1. tomatocasual.com Lin Carlson Says:

    I LOVE THIS EASY BRUSCHETTA RECIPE!!!!!!!!

    IS THERE A SAFE WAY TO PRESERVE OR CAN THIS RECIPE?

  2. tomatocasual.com michelle Says:

    Lin, good question, but I really don’t know of a good way to preserve this–once the tomatoes sit in the oil and/or in the refrigerator where you’d have to store this, they tend to lose any kind of firmness and indeed, flavor as well.

    This is best made fresh, but since it’s so easy, it’ll only take a few minutes anyway.

  3. tomatocasual.com Ray White Says:

    Hi Michelle. You are doing an execellent job. I enjoy it and find a lot of good information that I can use in my journal. THANKS so much.
    DAD

  4. tomatocasual.com michelle Says:

    Hi Dad, thanks so much for your comment! I’m glad you’re finding a lot of useful information here; hopefully we’ll keep giving you more for your journal :)

  5. tomatocasual.com RuthPrepper Says:

    Hi Lin!

    You really can’t can oil – it doesn’t process well. You could can the rest, but like Michelle said, the idea is fresh. If you want to, though, be sure to pressure-can it because it includes some low-acid vegetables. (Also, some modern, hybrid tomatoes have borderline acidity, not as high as most heirlooms.) When a recipe has a mixture of high-acid and low-acid foods, you must pressure-can. With any mixed foods, do NOT average the processing time…use the longest time for any specific vegetable.

    In general, you can can everything EXCEPT:

    – extremely low-acid foods (e.g., squash, unless combined with a high-acid food like tomatoes
    – oils (you could can a concentrate, e.g., “just add oil”)
    – dairy
    – thickeers (e.g., corn starch)

    You can water-bath can HIGH ACID foods, such as:

    – many tomatoes (if you’re not sure, measure the acidity of your recipe with a pH test kit)
    – most fruits (e.g., NOT bananas)
    – pickles or pickled items (the liquid MUST be AT LEAST HALF VINEGAR OF 5%)

    If you live above 1000 feet, you MUST pressure-can everything, because water boils at a lower temperature.

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