This simple bruschetta recipe with tomato and fresh basil is best when you use fresh, room temperature tomatoes. It’s also important to set aside a little time to allow the tomatoes to sit with salt. As the tomatoes sit, they become extra flavorful. They also release some of their juices, which is perfect for spooning onto the bread later.
1/2 pound ripe tomatoes, at room temperature (3 to 4 medium)
Salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
6 basil leaves, thinly sliced
Six 1/2-inch thick slices Italian or French bread
2 cloves garlic, peeled and left whole
Halve tomatoes then remove and discard the majority of the seeds. Chop tomatoes into 1/4-inch chunks then add to a medium bowl with a generous pinch of salt, a small pinch of black pepper, one tablespoon of the olive oil and the basil. Stir and let sit 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat a grill pan over medium heat or prepare an outdoor grill for medium heat. Drizzle bread slices with the remaining tablespoon of oil and grill 2 to 3 minutes on each side until warmed through and grill marks appear.
Rub one side of the bread while still warm with garlic — two to three strokes per bread slice should do it.
Stir the tomatoes one more time; taste then adjust with more salt or pepper as needed. Spoon a generous amount onto each bread slice. Drizzle a little of the juice remaining at the bottom of the bowl over tomatoes and enjoy.