- 8 slices day old, good quality Italian bread
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, 3 turns of the pan
- 2 tablespoons butter, cut into pieces
- 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 cups (2-ounce cans) tomato sauce
- 3 small plum tomatoes, seeded and chopped
- Several fresh basil leaves, torn
- 2 cups shredded mozzarella, smoked mozzarella or provolone cheese
Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Chop bread into bite size pieces. Add extra-virgin olive oil, butter and garlic to the skillet. Melt butter into oil then add the bread. Season the bread with salt and pepper. Toss and cook the bread 7 to 8 minutes then add the tomato sauce and fresh tomatoes. Turn to coat and warm the tomato sauce, 3 to 4 minutes.
Remove the bread gnocchi and tomatoes from heat and transfer to a casserole dish, top with basil then cover the dish with cheese. Place the casserole under the broiler and cook 2 to 3 minutes, until the cheese browns and bubbles. Serve immediately.