My sister had a little minor surgery last Friday, so I spent the day Saturday making all manner of casseroles and cobblers to take to her home in Tennessee. I knew she wasn’t going to feel up to cooking for a week or so, but that wasn’t going to stop her husband and daughter from being hungry.
So on Sunday afternoon, my daughter, Mary, and I loaded up the car and headed north. We stayed in Michie only a couple of hours, just long enough to fill the refrigerator and watch the end of a tear-jerker movie. Then we were headed back to Tupelo.
Let me just say, it pays to leave the house for four hours on Sunday afternoon.
When we arrived home, my husband had baked a loaf of beer bread that was delicious, and he had the fixings for bruschetta and chicken Parmesan on the counter. He’d actually been to the grocery store!
(It’s not that he’s incapable of going to the grocery store – it’s just usually my domain. My daughter thinks it’s utterly ridiculous that every grocery store owner/manager in Tupelo knows me by sight, if not by name.)
The chicken Parmesan, which I’ve written about before, was tender, juicy and flavorful, and we all ate way past the point of feeling full.
But the star of the show Sunday was probably the bruschetta. This is the perfect time of year to make it, while homegrown tomatoes and fresh basil are both abundant.
Don’t be put off by this appetizer’s fancy name; the combination of flavors is suitable for any palate. I think Charlie, Mary and I each got about two pieces. The rest was devoured by my 12-year-old son, Patrick, and his best friend, Josh.
Tomato Basil Bruschetta
1 pound Roma or vine-ripened tomatoes, chopped
6 fresh basil leaves, finely slivered
11/2 teaspoons minced garlic
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon kosher salt
11/2 teaspoons freshly ground pepper
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 French baguette
Combine tomatoes, basil, minced garlic, 2 tablespoons olive oil, vinegar, kosher salt and pepper in a bowl and mix well. Let stand at room temperature for 1 hour or longer.
Combine remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil with garlic powder in a small bowl. Slice the baguette diagonally into 1/2-inch thick slices. Brush with olive oil mixture. Grill or broil until lightly toasted. Top with tomato mixture to serve.
Makes 15 to 20.
Ginna Parsons is the Daily Journal’s food/home/garden editor.
Ginna Parsons/NEMS Daily Journal