Grilled Tomato Bruschetta

Grilled Tomato Bruschetta9_acookscanvas-copyright2012-2017_90

I have a love-hate relationship with Autumn. I love the colorful fall leaves, cozy sweaters, and hearty stews and soups; but the end of summer also means saying goodbye to my favorite taste of summer, ripe juicy tomatoes.

Grilled Tomato Bruschetta_acookscanvas-copyright2012-2017_90

Grilled Tomato Bruschetta2_acookscanvas-copyright2012-2017_90

Grilled Tomato Bruschetta3_acookscanvas-copyright2012-2017_90

My favorite summer tomato recipe is grilled bruschetta; crusty slabs of grilled sourdough rubbed with raw garlic, topped with sweet cherry tomatoes, balsamic vinegar, and fresh basil. Originally served in Italy as an antipasto, basic bruschetta consists of grilled bread rubbed with fresh garlic and topped only with olive oil and salt, but makes an excellent base for experimentation.

Grilled Tomato Bruschetta4_acookscanvas-copyright2012-2017_90

Grilled Tomato Bruschetta5_acookscanvas-copyright2012-2017_90

Grilled Tomato Bruschetta6_acookscanvas-copyright2012-2017_90

Grilled Tomato Bruschetta7_acookscanvas-copyright2012-2017_90

Variations add ingredients ranging from tomatoes, roasted vegetables, whole or mashed beans, to cheeses and cured meats, often becoming a meal in itself. My personal favorite bruschetta includes roasting the tomatoes to intensify their natural character with a bit of flavorful char and is an excellent way to enjoy sweet, late-harvest tomatoes while they last.

Grilled Tomato Bruschetta8_acookscanvas-copyright2012-2017_90

Grilled Tomato Bruschetta10_acookscanvas-copyright2012-2017_90

Grilled Tomato Bruschetta11_acookscanvas-copyright2012-2017_90

This recipe is quick and easy, and makes for a light summery dinner, or can be enjoyed as an appetizer and pairs perfectly with 2012 Sonoma The Cutrer. It’s a mild-creamy Chardonnay with notes of roasted nuts, honey, nectarine, and honeydew melon. I hope you enjoy it as much as we have.

Makes 8 large toasts

8 1” thick slices of sourdough or ciabatta (I prefer La Brea)
3 tablespoons olive oil (for bread and tomatoes)
2 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
20 large basil leaves, thinly sliced
1 lb grape or cherry tomatoes, I chose a gourmet medley
1 large clove raw garlic, peeled
Flaked finishing salt (I like Fleur de Sel de Geurande or Maldon for this dish)

Preheat one side of the grill to low. Brush each slice of bread on both sides with olive oil, set aside. In a medium bowl toss tomatoes with a tablespoon of oil and sprinkle with salt and fresh cracked pepper. Make a foil pouch for tomato mixture, sealing edges well to create steam.

Grill bread 4-5 minutes per side, watching closely so it doesn’t burn. Transfer to the cool side of the grill to keep warm while grilling foil pouch for 10 minutes.

When the bread has cooled enough to handle, rub each side with a garlic clove and finish with a few twists of cracked pepper. Toss tomatoes with chopped basil to combine, adding a drizzle of olive oil if necessary. Some tomatoes will have burst but most should remain intact, providing explosive little bursts of flavor with each bite. Arrange bread around the bowl, topping each piece immediately before serving. Enjoy!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: