Bruschetta is a simple grilled or toasted bread garnished with ripe chopped cherry tomatoes, extra virgin olive oil and torn basil.  Throughout the 20 regions of Italy bruschetta can be served with chicken liver or slow-cooked cannellini beans and rosemary in Tuscany or crushed tomatoes with black olives and basil in Campania.  In Venice, bruschetta is served with whipped baccala. Bruschetta takes its name from the word, bruciare, which means to burn.

Food historians say bruschetta originated during the 15th century. However, it can be traced back to Ancient Rome, when farmers would bring their olives to the local olive press, then press them immediately and drizzle the olio nuovo, new oil.

Difficulty: Beginner Best Season: Suitable throughout the year


Basic Bruschetta

Selection 1: Zucchini Topping

Section 2: Tomato Topping

Section 3: Eggplant Topping


Preparing basic bruschetta

  1. Cut bread into slices about ½ inch thick. Either place under a broiler or on grill, and cook until just golden. Turn and repeat. Take the bruschetta away from heat, and using a clove of garlic on the prongs of a fork, rub one side of the toasts. Next brush a little olive oil on each toast. Eat as is, or proceed with topping of choice.

Selection 1: Zucchini Topping

  1. Clean the zucchini, washing them and cutting off the two ends.

    Divide them in 4 lengthways and then into smaller pieces.

    Fry the onion until golden, stirring with a wooden spoon.

    Add the zucchini, the parsley, the garlic and season. Continue cooking until tender. Leave to cool a little and then put on the bruschetta.

Selection 2: Tomato Topping

  1. Cut the tomatoes into small pieces and put into a bowl.

    Add the rest of the ingredients and mix well.

    Season as desired and then cover with cling film and put in the fridge for about ½ hour until chilled.

Selection 3: Eggplant Topping

  1. Heat the oil in a saucepan. Put in the eggplant and cook until tender. Add the garlic, parsley and tomatoes and seasoning, and continue cooking until tender. Serve while the sauce is still warm.

Keywords: bruschetta, tuscan, antipasti,