Red Basil, Red Tomato Brushetta

Bruschetta is one of those foods that taste so good, and is so easy to throw together, yet for one reason or another I just never make it. And it is a real shame too; I order it at restaurants and repeatedly read over new recipes  and versions of it in cookbooks. And even though all it takes is a little chopping, toasting and tossing, it just does not happen in my  kitchen.

But, when walking through the farmers market this weekend, I came across red basil. I had never seen or heard of red basil before this, and I was mesmerized. A beautiful bouquet of red basil selling right alongside ripe new jersey tomatoes. It was a no brainer. These two items were going to become my first red basil, red tomato bruschetta. 

The red basil was some of the sweetest I had ever tasted and it really shone in the bruschetta. The tomatoes were equally sweet and were nicely offset by the acidity of the balsamic vinaigrette. Fresh and light, this recipe was perfect for a late summer afternoon lunch. And it is one recipe I will not wait too long to repeat.

Red Tomato Red Basil Bruschetta
Makes 9-10 toasts

3 tomatos
1/2 onion, diced
2-3 sprigs fresh basil, (red if you can find it) chopped
1/4 cup fruity olive oil, plus a little extra for the toast
1 Tbs balsamic
1/2 tsp salt
pepper to taste
1 whole grain baguette (though you might only use 3/4 of it)

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Slice the baguette diagonally into half inch pieces. On a large oiled baking sheet, bake the baguette cut side down, rubbing the bread a little on the baking sheet so that it soaks up a bit of the oil. Bake for 5 minutes or until slightly crisp.

Quarter the tomatoes and remove the seeds by hand. Dice the tomatoes and place in a large bowl. Add the basil, onions, olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper. Toss and taste. Adjust seasoning if necessary. 

Top the toast with the tomato mixture and serve.