Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Simple Bruschetta

One of the lessons that I have to relearn embarrasingly often is that for some things, simple is better. I have a tendency to think that if some is good, more is better (except for alcohol, of course - I learned that lesson conclusively a long time ago). It isn't until I am too tired to "do more" that I do less and remember that simple can be really good.

Take bruschetta ("tasty things on toast") as an example. My standard bruschetta dinner has evolved into something like pizza bread, based on a loaf of ciabatta bread sliced lengthwise and heaped with lots of tasty toppings; it makes for a filling dinner. But last night, I made more traditional bruschetta, with just a few simple toppings, and it tasted wonderful. Oh yeah. I will keep making my heaped version, but it is good to go back to basics once in a while and remember how little it takes to make a good meal.

Simple Bruschetta
Take a loaf of bread that is long and relatively narrow; I used one with roasted garlic in it, but a bigger baguette or long ciabatta bread works well, too. Slice it thinly and discard (into kids' mouths around here) the heels. Spread a thin layer of goat cheese or good feta on each piece of bread and place it on a cooling rack (or cookie sheet); it will probably take two racks for a loaf of bread. Trim and thinly slice a bunch of green onions; place a few onion slices on each piece of bread. Stick under a hot broiler for a few minutes, until the cheese is soft but the bread isn't turning brown. Slice tomatoes into small wedges or slices and place one or two on each toast; the tomato shouldn't overwhelm the toast. Return to broiler for a minute or two, just long enough to warm the tomato but not long enough to burn the toast edges. Serve promptly as an appetizer, side dish, or light main course.

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