It doesn’t get any easier than this-bruschetta. Now I’m sure you’ve eaten it in various restaurants and probably had it served to you at more than one party as an hors d’ouevres. I’m guessing you also probably remember which ones you really enjoyed and which were sort of mediocre. I’ve had both, including some that I must admit were not so good.
You can be the one who serves bruschetta that your friends will remember and talk about. It all comes down to five ingredients-tomatoes, basil, garlic, olive oil and bread- plus salt and pepper. “How hard is that?” you’re probably asking yourself. Not hard at all, however there is one rule that cannot be ignored-you need the best ingredients available. That’s it. No compromises allowed.
My bruschetta by-laws:
Buy a great loaf of country-style bread-something with a nice crust and a dense crumb. Let it sit around for a few days-it’s better when it’s a little stale. If at all possible, grill the bread over an open flame-charcoal or gas.
Right after you take the bread off the grill rub the warm side with a half a clove of garlic. This will add a fabulous layer of flavor to your dish. Add chopped garlic to your tomatoes, but not too much. You want the tomatoes and the bread to be the stars.
Use the best vine ripened tomatoes that you can find. Don’t even think about making this dish in the middle of winter. Seriously…
Break out your favorite extra-virgin olive oil-you don’t really need that much, just enough to coat your chopped tomatoes-but a flavorful oil will add that extra something to your bruschetta.
Tear fresh basil into pieces and mix into your tomato/garlic mixture. Sprinkle with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper.
Oh-one more thing-be sure to make enough. Your guests will eat all of it!