Late summer in New England is such an exciting time because the local harvest is in full swing, and the glorious heirloom tomatoes start coming to market. My favorite way of enjoying these tomatoes is by making Bruschetta. In addition to good ripe tomatoes, you need to find a nice rustic loaf of bread that will have a nice rough service once grilled to rub the garlic on.
2-3 Ripe Heirloom tomatoes
6-8 Slices of rustic bread round 1/3” to ½” thick
1 clove of garlic peeled and sliced into halves
Fleur De Sel or good sea salt
Grill the rustic bread on both sides until golden brown. Make sure that you give it enough time to make the entire piece of bread crusty. Take the garlic clove half and rub it over each piece of toasted bread. If you don’t have a grill or you can’t grill the bread you can also brush each side of the bread with olive oil and put in a 400-degree oven for 15 minutes. If you like garlic like I do, you can rub garlic on both sides of the bread, or just one side if you want to have less garlic flavor. Slice your heirloom tomatoes in thin slices and arrange in a single layer on the bread. Top the tomato with Fleur de Sel or good sea salt and give it some fresh pepper. Take your fresh basil leaves and roll them up like a cigar and slice across the basil roll to create nice thin tendrils of basil. Sprinkle the basil over the top of the bread and tomatoes and finish with some good olive oil drizzled over the top. I use my Casas De Hualdo single varietal Manzanilla olive oil because it has a medium amount of olive taste that will not overpower the beautiful flavor of the fresh tomatoes.
Serve immediately and enjoy! Don’t let it sit too long or the fresh tomato juice will start to make your bread soft. I often make some other Italian inspired Antipasti to go along with this great opener. You can check our website for these additional recipes.