Bruschetta Bar

Total Time:
30 min
Prep:
15 min
Cook:
15 min

Yield:
10 servings
Level:
Easy

Ingredients
  • To make toasts:
  • 2 loaves crusty Italian or French bread
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Assorted toppings, recipes follow
  • Tomato and Ricotta Salata:
  • 2 large shallots, sliced thin
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups chopped seeded vine-ripened tomato
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 ounces ricotta salata (firm salted sheep's milk cheese) or feta, cut into fine dice (about 1/2 cup)
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh chives, or more, to taste
  • 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar, or more, to taste
  • Mozzarella, Greens, and Garlic:
  • 1 1/4 pounds arugula, spinach, or escarole
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced and mashed to a paste with 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup coarsely shredded mozzarella
  • Caponata:
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 3 1/2 cups (1/4-inch dice) unpeeled eggplant (about 1 1/4-pounds)
  • 3/4 cup finely chopped onion
  • 3/4 cup finely chopped celery
  • 1/3 cup chopped pitted green olives
  • 3 tablespoons chopped drained bottled capers
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar, or more, to taste
  • 3 tablespoons golden raisins, optional
  • 3 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted lightly
  • 3 plum tomatoes, cut into 1/4-inch diced (about 1 cup)
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped flat-leafed parsley leaves
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Directions
Watch how to make this recipe. To make toasts:
  • Prepare grill or preheat broiler. With a serrated knife cut bread crosswise into 1/2-inch thick slices. Grill slices on a rack set about 4 inches over glowing coals for 1 to 1 1/2 minutes on each side, or until golden brown and crisp outside but still soft inside. Alternatively, slices may be broiled in batches under a broiler about 4 inches from heat 1 to 1 1/2 minutes on each side, or until golden. Rub toasts with garlic on one side and lightly brush same side with oil. Toasts may be made 1 week ahead and kept in an airtight container.

Tomato and Ricotta Salata:
  • In a small skillet cook shallots in oil over moderate heat, stirring, until softened. Stir in tomato and salt and pepper to taste and cook, stirring 30 seconds, or until just heated through. In a bowl toss together tomato mixture with cheese, chives, vinegar, and salt and pepper, to taste, and mound about 1 tablespoon on oiled side of each toast.

Mozzarella, Greens, and Garlic:
  • Discard coarse stems from greens and wash leaves thoroughly. Coarsely chop the greens (there should be about 6 cups).

  • In a large heavy skillet, cook garlic paste in oil over moderately low heat, stirring, 1 minute. Add greens, salt, and pepper and saute over moderately high heat, stirring, until wilted and tender, about 3 minutes. Pour off any excess liquid. Transfer mixture to a bowl and cool to warm. Stir in mozzarella.

Caponata:
  • In a heavy skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking. Saute the eggplant, stirring, for 3 to 5 minutes, or until tender, and transfer to a bowl. To the skillet add the remaining 2 tablespoons oil and in it cook the onion and the celery over moderate heat, stirring, for 5 minutes.

  • Add the olives, capers, vinegar, sugar, raisins, pine nuts, and tomatoes and cook the mixture, covered, stirring occasionally, for 5 to 10 minutes, or until it is cooked through and the celery is tender. Transfer it to the bowl. Stir in the parsley, let the caponata cool, and chill it, covered, overnight. Season the caponata with salt and pepper.

  • Wine Suggestions: Kendall Jackson Chardonnay Hahn Estates or Glass Mountain Merlot Rosemount Shiraz


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