Hi everyone, this weeks post is featuring a lovely Italian recipe called Bruschetta (pronounced – brew-skett-ah), which you’ve probably already heard of. This is the recipe that my family use when we make it, and it came from the Green, River Cafe Book, a brilliant, really posh recipe book by the way, and it is absolutely beautiful. It’s one of those simple, yet so fantastic dishes. Something that you’ll want to make again and again and again, like my Mum’s orzo salad recipe that I posted not long ago. Give it a go anyway and tell me what you think. I’d love to hear your ideas for variations. One thing that I thought could be added to the recipe would be some really mild red and yellow chillies. I think they’d work very well. Anyway, have a great week this week and get yourself into the kitchen to give this a go, unless of course you’re reading this where it’s still winter and capsicums are shockingly expensive, then you should probably wait a while till Summer. Besides, vegetables always taste better when they’re in season anyway!
Bruschetta con Pomodori e Peperoni – Serves 6
From the River Cafe Cook Book Green by Rose Gray and Ruth Rogers)
12 ripe, medium tomatoes
3 large ripe, rosy red peppers (capsicums)
Sea salt and freshly-ground black pepper
Decent extra-virgin olive oil
Aged balsamic vinegar
6 garlic cloves, peeled
3 tbsp of fresh purple basil leaves, rough chopped (green leaves would also be fine)
6 slices of sourdough bread, or an equally suitable toasting bread about 1.5cm thick (0.6 in)
Pre-heat the oven to 200 degrees C/400 degrees F.
Cut the peppers in half and then each half into thirds. Remove the seeds and any thick fibres from the inside. Place in an oven-proof dish, season generously with salt and pepper, then roast in the pre-heated oven for 15 mins. Drizzle extra-virgin olive oil all over and dribble on some balsamic vinegar. Return to the oven and roast for a further 15 mins until the skin is crisp at the edges and the peppers soft.
In a separate small roasting tray, place the tomatoes and garlic cloves. Pour over a little extra-virgin olive oil and 2 tsp of balsamic vinegar. Roast in the oven ’til the flesh is soft and the skin burst, about 10 mins. Turn the tomatoes over in their juices, then add the basil and yet another tbsp of balsamic vinegar. Season with salt and pepper.
Toast the bread and both sides, either in the oven or toaster, and rigorously rub over with a clove of garlic. Be very thorough. Drizzle with either extra-virgin olive oil (there’s a lot, I know!) or avocado oil and spoon on the peppers and tomatoes.
Serve hot either on its own or maybe accompanied with a few cheeses and a fresh salad. Have fun with it.
Note – This recipe freezes really well. I’d leave it in for absolutely no more than a year, I once tried one that was two and a half years old that we’d forgotten about and it tasted ok but I also couldn’t help thinking while eating it that it wasn’t a good idea.