Roasted Tomato Bruschetta Posted by: | March 26, 2011
 

So here I am blogging in the dark, during Earth Hour. My first Earth Hour ever in Vietnam. I can’t really tell whether other houses/buildings are doing Earth Hour, as it’s always very dark when I look out my window into my alley at night. It’s one of the reasons why I avoid coming home after 10 – 11pm. It’s so dark that I’m afraid I fall into the drain before a neighborhood drug junkie robs me. That’s right, my nightlife is completely non-existent in Vietnam. But it sort of makes me treasure the day more, so I’m a much earlier riser now, following the living pace of the true Hanoians.

So on weekends, I usually wake up by 8am to have breakfast with my parents (who still insist that I get up too late, they usually would have done laundry and morning walks by the time I stumble out of bed), then I would make a light, healthy western dish for lunch. My mom likes to eat something different on weekends, so it’s my time to experiment the most in the kitchen. This time, we happened to have baguette and lots of tomatoes in the fridge. This just screams “Bruschetta” to me. Luckily I still have a bunch of basil frozen in my freezer (I have to freeze herbs as I can only visit the western market once in awhile to buy western herbs and spices). I would usually make bruschetta with fresh tomatoes and eat it raw on toasted bread, however, Mom still doubts the safety of raw local vegetables here, so I opted to roast it. Which turned out delicious! Since it was going to be roasted, I decided to top the bread with some Emmental cheese my Dad left behind in the fridge, and it melted beautifully into the sweet juicy tomatoes.

Olive oil, basil leaves, and juicy, ripe tomatoes on top of garlicky toasted bread is always my cheapest and fastest ticket to Italy. That’s what I love about eating. It takes you to places with each bite. If there is one appetizer I can’t live without, it would be Bruschetta. And I’m proud to say that I haven’t tasted many Bruschettas in Italian restaurants that taste as satisfying as the ones made in my humble kitchen. So today I shall give you one of my best kitchen secrets. The best thing about this recipe is, there are no measurements as everything is according to taste and your own preference.

Roasted Tomato Bruschetta

INGREDIENTS:

(There is no exact measurement to follow, just moderate based on the amount of bread and tomatoes you have)

  • Tomatoes (peeled, deseeded and chopped)
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Garlic (1 clove halved to spread on bread and a few cloves finely chopped)
  • Basil leaves (finely chopped)
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Parmesan Cheese or Emmental Cheese (grated)

METHOD:

(Preheat Oven to 220 deg C or 425 deg F)

1. Peel your tomatoes using whichever method you prefer. Either drop them in boiling water for 10 seconds, then rinse in ice water to let the skin peel off, or use a vegetable peeler to peel off the skin in zig-zag motion. I usually just use the vegetable peeler to save time. Halve the peeled tomatoes across the middle section, squeeze out the seeds or scoop out the seeds with a teaspoon. Chop the tomatoes into small cubes and put in a mixing bowl.

2. Add about 2 – 3 tablespoons of Extra Virgin Olive Oil, basil and chopped garlic to the tomatoes, season to taste with salt and pepper and toss to mix.

3. Cut your bread or baguette into 1-2cm thick slices, and rub the halved garlic on one side of the bread. Spread the tomato mixture on the garlicky side and grate some cheese on top. I omit the step of toasting the bread before topping it, as I prefer the bread to be half crunchy half soft after roasting it with the tomatoes. If you prefer hard, crunchy bruschetta, you should toast the bread for about 7 minutes in the oven before spreading it.

4. Now those babies are ready to be roasted. Put them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and roast for about 10 minutes or until the tomatoes start to have burnt edges.

These bruschettas were so satisfying that it was enough to be our lunch on a Weekend. It was my Mom’s first time having Bruschetta and she was blown away by the rich flavors coming from just a few ingredients with such minimal seasoning. Tomatoes, Basil and Olive oil – These are the 3 building blocks of many Italian dishes, and all you need for a great spread of healthy Bruschetta. You can serve them raw or roasted. If you’re roasting them like mine, make sure to add some cheese (Parmesan, Emmental or Mozarella) for that extra punch of flavor and melted goodness. I’d choose this over pizza any day.

 

4 Responses to “Roasted Tomato Bruschetta”

  1. Phuong says:

    Hi there
    so glad your back. Guess what? I got so close to abandoning you and your blog after many days of checking back and find no new posts. Yet i am still here and really hope u won’t let us foodies down this time by disappearing from the blogging world in such a long time. Anyway, I am looking for another bread recipe for a change from my usual bread breakfast and this Roasted Tomato Bruschetta is just perfect, definitely give it a try. Love the pho xao too so easy yet yummy.

    • Chi Anh says:

      Thanks for not abandoning my blog. I’m so glad I still have loyal readers like you. Don’t worry, I’m not going anywhere. Just really caught up with life sometimes. I love all things bread and am always looking out for more bread recipes. Pita bread pockets and Panini sandwiches are my favorites too. Will try to make them and show you next time. So do come back ok? :)

  2. Nothing beats a good ol’ bruschetta hey? It’s just odd that your mum would doubt the safety of the tomatoes, I mean what could go wrong? Wow, never thought you’d have to freeze your western herbs (but it makes sense since you wouldn’t need it all the time); makes me appreciate being able to have these available to be in an abundance!

    • Chi Anh says:

      Phuoc: well vegetables in Vietnam are often not reliable as they tend to use a lot of pesticide or chemicals… so we avoid eating raw vegetables unless we buy it from a reliable source. You won’t believe how hard it is for me to buy basil and other western herbs here. I’ve found one shop that sells them and I go there once in awhile to stock up. I plan to grow my own herbs in the summer though!

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