Summertime makes me hungry for light and cold foods made with fresh veggies and fruit. And since you can get lots of fresh garden veggies this time of year, this will be a real treat for you to make with your own fresh stuff out of your garden! Last night I had a craving for some Bruschetta. So I thought I would make my own version. It was SOOO good, I thought I would share my recipe!
What you'll need:
1 French bread loaf/baguette
1 8-oz cream cheese ( I used the cream cheese that comes in the little plastic tub, which is more spreadable, but the regular kind would work great too. You just might want to let it soften some for spreading).
Fresh garlic- I LOVE garlic so I used a LOT, maybe like a tablespoon or more minced, and my cloves were huge. So just use to your liking, if you like things really garlicky like I do then go for it! If not, you may just want to make it slightly garlicky.
Fresh basil leaves- cut fine. This will go in the cream cheese spread and the tomato salad part- I used maybe 6 large leaves for each thing I was adding to, but you can use more or less depending on your liking. I didn't mince it, but if you want you can. I like the bigger pieces throughout it.
1 large whole ripe tomato- chopped in small chunks
1/4 of a large onion or half of a small one- chopped up small
1 cucumber- chopped in small chunks
Sea salt & ground pepper
In a small bowl, mix your cream cheese with the minced garlic and fresh basil. Set aside. In another bowl, combine your chopped onions, tomatoes, cucumber and fresh basil pieces (your kitchen should have a WONDERFUL aroma by now!). The fresh garlic and fresh basil really make this dish!! I LOVE lots of both in it! At this point you can add some balsamic vinegar (or if you have a favorite homemade balsamic dressing) to the salad. I left it out of mine and just had it without the vinegar and it was great! But today I did have some with my husband's homemade balsamic dressing and it was yummy as well, so really with or without is great!
Ok, now you take your french loaf/baguette and slice diagonal slices off. Lay slices on a cookie sheet, sprinkle with olive oil, sea salt, ground pepper & parmesan cheese (in that order). Place on the top rack of your oven and broil until tops of toast are just crispy and golden brown, but DO NOT burn them! Once your toast is ready, you now spread the cream cheese mixture over them, and then spoon the tomato salad on top, eat and enjoy!!
Note: You'll want to make these up as people want them, you don't want to make them up ahead of time and have them sit. Otherwise they'll get soggy. You want the toast to stay crunchy and just right. So eat them right as you make them!