*Disclaimer – I never measure with this recipe, so I had to guesstimate all of these amounts. Some may need to be altered, just use your best judgment!
I make a whole loaf of this at once, because if I don’t, people get upset. This recipe makes a whole loaf of bruschetta. You certainly could make individual slices, I just find this to be a much easier, quicker route, and it feeds a crowd without bending over the counter for an hour topping each little piece of bread. I’ve done up to 4 loaves of these babies in under an hour!
One loaf of your favorite crusty bread (I like to use ciabatta, or a focaccia loaf, but whatever makes you smile is fine)
2 – 2 1/2 lbs. ripe Roma tomatoes, diced (You can use petite diced tomatoes in a can, drained, but I think fresh is best)
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 shallot, diced (can substitute 1/2 an onion, diced)
3 – 4 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
1/2 – 3/4 c. fresh basil leaves, roughly chopped
1/4 c. fresh parsley, roughly chopped
salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
8 – 10 oz. fresh mozzarella cheese, cut or broken into small chunks
8 oz. goat cheese
1/3 c. parmesan cheese
Pre-heat oven to 400°.
In a large bowl, combine tomatoes, garlic, onion, olive oil, vinegar, basil, parsley, mozzarella cheese, salt and pepper. Mix thoroughly. Allow the mixture to sit for about 15 minutes. After 15 minutes or so, drain the ‘juice’ from the tomato mixture. You don’t want soggy bruschetta..yuck! You’ll still have some in there, and that’s okay, you just want to get rid of the bulk of the water from the tomatoes.
Slice the bread evenly down the middle into two pieces. (If you are using a loaf that is rounded on the bottoms, slice off a 1/4 inch of the rounded part to make the bread lay flat, so it will be easier to work with and you won’t lose any yummy stuff!) Spray or brush bread with olive oil, then lightly salt and pepper it. Place it in the oven and let it toast to a golden brown.
When bread is toasted and slightly cooled, spread goat cheese on both halves.
(If you don’t dig goat cheese, you can use provolone slices. Just put the provolone slices on, then stick it back in the oven until it melts.)
You can put the bread back in the oven if you want to warm up your goat cheese a little, but it’s not necessary.
Using a slotted spoon, heap the tomato mixture on top of the bread, spreading it out evenly. Top with parmesan cheese and a little extra basil, for garnish.
To serve, I just use a large knife and cut each half in sections according to desired size. I’ve made this as an appetizer, but also as the main course served with a green salad.
Yum….I think that’s what’s on the menu for tonight!
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