Tomatoes! Yum! At least that’s how most everyone sees it. I guess I am not most everyone.
I know, saying that I don’t like the main ingredient in one of my recipes is not the greatest sales pitch, but I’d rather be honest with you than make you think that I think raw tomatoes are the bomb-diggity.
So, I guess this blog is more of a confession for me:
I really, frankly, just don’t like fresh tomatoes.
I don’t know what it is specifically. I think it’s a combination of the acidity mixed with the gooey seeds. I’m definitely an anomaly in my family, though. My mom loves tomatoes and has suggested that I make her tomato salad one episode. My dad loved tomatoes and would always say how he liked to eat them like you’d eat an apple….just bite into ‘em! And my super-healthy sister loves them too…with her cottage cheese and egg whites, of course.
So. Here I sit on the fringe of society…or at least my family…wanting desperately to fit in.
I joke about this, but in all sincerity, I would love to love fresh tomatoes and I keep trying them in hopes that one day my taste buds will change and I will just start loving them!! That happened to me with mushrooms, green peppers, onions and avocados….so I know it’s possible. (Oh, and yes, there was a time I didn’t like avocados. Now, I can’t get enough!)
Thankfully, I love tomatoes cooked or dried or ketchuped or most any other way but raw.
…but fresh tomatoes look soooo good. I envision that they would add so much to a sandwich or a good burger.
That’s why I love this recipe. It’s basically my training wheels recipe for me liking fresh tomatoes. There is something about the salt, garlic and vinegar that mellows the acidity of the tomatoes. They’re super sweet and flavorful….and they’re still raw! That’s how I know that I am destined to be a big fan of raw tomatoes.
Aside from this recipe being my bridge to loving tomatoes, it’s a rock-solid recipe for Bruschetta. I think sautéing the garlic first adds a dynamic of flavor to this recipe that you just don’t get making Bruschetta with raw garlic. It adds a sweetness to it…which gives these little toasts a rustic, comfort vibe.
They are so easy to make and they’re a perfect appetizer for a party! You can make as much of the tomato mixture and Crostini as you need …and then right before you’re ready to serve, just top the Crostini with the tomatoes. They’ll definitely hold up for a while on the Crostini, but you don’t want to top them too soon or the toast will get soggy.
I’m excited for you to try this one out and let me know what you think. And if you know anyone who is like me, you might think about making a batch of this Bruschetta and see the reaction you get. You might just be surprised. They might just be surprised.
Can’t wait to hear from you!
SO WHAT YOU'RE GONNA NEED IS:
- 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil http://amzn.to/2xBJtug
- 3 cloves Garlic http://amzn.to/2wSz6i5
- 1 pint Grape Tomatoes http://amzn.to/2wSMBy9
- 1 Red Onion http://amzn.to/2wTcJsQ
- 1 1/2 teaspoon Balsamic Vinegar http://amzn.to/2fN4lp8
- 8 leaves Fresh Basil http://amzn.to/2wQSRLA
- To taste Salt http://amzn.to/2xPLrZ6
- To taste Pepper http://amzn.to/2y4mKZf
- 1/2 loaf Sourdough Baguette
- To taste Balsamic Glaze
Prepare the Tomatoes
- Press Garlic.
- In a small Pan over medium heat, add Olive Oil and sauté the pressed Garlic until golden brown. Turn off heat and take pan off stove.
- Cut Tomatoes in half lengthwise. Place in a bowl.
- Chiffonade Basil leaves by stacking them up, rolling them and then cutting 1-2mm slices across the rolled up leaves. This will create long strips of Basil. Place in bowl with Tomatoes.
- Minch Red Onion and set aside until the very end to top off the Bruschetta.
- Pour cooled Garlic and Oil over the Tomatoes.
- Add Balsamic Vinegar to the Bowl. Season with Salt and Pepper. (You might need a touch more Salt than you think.)
- Stir the Tomato combination and let marinate for about an hour, although you could use immediately if needed. Store covered in refrigerator if not using immediately.
Prepare the Bread (Crostini)
- Cut dense Baguette (sourdough works great!) into 1/4 – 1/2 inch slices.
- Place in mixing bowl. Add Salt and mix until Bread is thoroughly coated.
- Place Bread on baking sheet.
- Toast at 350F on both sides until Bread is golden brown.
- When ready to serve, spoon Tomato mixture on top of Crostini. Top with the minced Red Onion and Balsamic Glaze.