Very excited to do my very first recipe post for you guys! Don’t be fooled by the caption folks, it may be basic to make but it’s definitely not basic in flavour!
This one here is a great go-to staple for a quick and easy snack, entree or even dinner! You can use pre-bought balsamic reduction or you can make your own. Don’t worry guys it’s super easy and I’ll be showing you how!
We like to have this one as a main dinner just cause its so scrump-diddly-umptious that we can’t stop at just one piece each! Hell no! But it’s good for a starter too… chefs choice.
For this one I have just used a store bought White Vienna loaf from the supermarket but if you were feeling a bit adventurous I’m sure home made bread would taste even MORE deliciouso, not that it gets much better than this 😉
The main ingredients for this one are basil, tomatoes, balsamic vinegar (or reduction) and some bread! Easy peasy!
Okay so first you wanna chop it up! C’mon get those juices flowing! Dice them as fine or fat as you like them, I prefer mine quite small so that the tomatoes flavour isn’t overpowering and is more evenly spread. I have used a mixture of roma and round tomatoes just cause that’s what we had but use whatever type of tomatoes tickle your fancy!
hot tip: leave your tomatoes on the counter not in the fridge, it enhances the flavour!
Grab the loaf of bread and start slicing it up! I like it better on an angle just ’cause looks fancier and also gives you bigger pieces to work with.
Line them on a greased tray and brush one side (or both sides if you’re into that) with olive oil or, optionally, vegan butter. Place them face down on the tray and whack those babies in the oven to crisp up! You’re going to want to leave them in for inbewteen 10-15 mins or so depending on your oven, and be sure to turn them over and rotate the trays half way through.
Okay, now for the only mildly thought provoking part, the balsamic reduction! So while the breads cooking, pretty much all you need to do is get about a cup of balsamic vinegar into a pot and pop that son-of-a right onto the stove. You want to bring it to a boil then down to a simmer like so…
Now you gotta let its stew in its own extremely pungent (and eye watering if you get to close!) juices for a bit, your aim is to reduce some of the moisture through the steam and bring it to a thicker consistency. If you like it a bit sweet (like I do) add in a tablespoon of sugar or sweetener of choice before you boil it. Depending on your taste you’re going to want to leave it for varied times but generally you want to let it reduce by half. I like mine quite thick so I let mine simmer away until it was just thick enough to draw a line in it.
You don’t want it to get too thick though or it will go rock hard!
…but, if you happen to get distracted, perhaps by having to play defense with your toddler and the hot oven that she has an obsession with touching, and let it get a little thicker than desired, have no fear! It’s easily remedied by adding a bit of extra balsamic vinegar to loosen it. Be warned though that this does indeed thicken as it cools so be sure to leave it bit runnier than desired or you could end up with balsamic toffee! eugh!
Mix the basil, tomato, a tiny bit of balsamic and even some sesame seed oil to add a more dynamic flavour in a bowl, and pile a gigantic mountain onto your crispy bread, drizzle with the balsamic reduction and VOILA! D-e-lishious.
BASIC BASIL BALSAMIC BRUSCHETTA
Prep time: 5 mins Cook time: 15 mins Serves: 5-10
- 5/6 good sized tomatoes
- 1 bunch of basil
- 1 cup of balsamic vinegar OR 1/2 cup of balsamic reduction
- 1 tablespoon of sugar *optional
- 1 tablespoon of sesame seed oil *optional
- 1 loaf of crusted bread
- 1/2 cup of olive oil or vegan butter
- Preheat oven to 200 degrees Celsius.
- Dice the tomatoes and basil and slice the bread diagonally into long pieces.
- Combine the tomatoes, basil and sesame seed oil in a bowl, set aside.
- Pour the balsamic vinegar into pot and add the sugar, bring to the boil and then down to a simmer. Simmer until a line can be drawn in the bottom of the pan (roughly reduced by half). *skip this step if you are using balsamic reduction
- While the vinegar is simmering, brush the bread on one side with the oil and place face down on an oiled tray, leave to crisp up for 10-15 minutes, turning over the bread and the trays half way through.
- When the bread is golden around the edges and crispy, take out of the oven and top with the tomato mixture and drizzle with balsamic reduction.
- Serve immediately.
Let me know in the comments if you have any questions or just want to say hi!
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