Tomato Caper Bruschetta Appetizer
Tomato Caper Bruschetta is a crowd-pleasing appetizer that can be easily varied to tastes and availability of ingredients throughout the season. Grilling the bread, or pan toasting improves the texture and flavor. Slow roasting the tomatoes brings out its inherent sweetness, softens the texture and deepens the color. Some may prefer to serve the tomato mixture in a bowl and arrange the toasted slices around it on a platter.
For convenience, the tomatoes can be mixed with the garlic, capers, oregano, and vinegar and allowed to marinate in the refrigerator overnight. The flavors will blend well. Bring the mixture to room temperature before adding the remaining ingredients and serving.
For the novice cook, or dedicated foodie, this recipe is ripe with potential. You may prefer the peppery flavored arugula over the sweeter flavor of basil, or a combination of all three greens. You might like to crown it with a slice of anchovy, smoked salmon, black olives, mashed avocado, or a dollop of caramelized onion. You can make this recipe your own specialty.
Mercedes-Benz of Princeton’s Tomato Caper Bruschetta Appetizer
Total prep time: 1 hour, 10 minutes
Active time: 0 hours, 20 minutes
Inactive time: 0 hours, 50 minutes
Yield: Serves about 6 two slice servings
2 pounds cherry or Roma tomatoes
4 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 large cloves of garlic, smashed, peeled and minced
1/2 cup fresh basil, arugula, or spinach, plus additional for garnish
2 Tablespoons capers, smashed and minced
1 Tablespoon fresh oregano, finely chopped
1 Tablespoon aged balsamic vinegar
Sea salt and cracked black pepper to taste
Fresh shaved Parmesan cheese for garnish
1 Large crusty baguette
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. If using cherry tomatoes, slice in half. If using Romas, chop into quarters. Toss the tomatoes with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and spread them out on a baking tray. Roast until the tomatoes have broken down, about 45 to 50 minutes.
In the meantime, slice the baguette diagonally into 3/4 to 1 inch slices. Lightly brush with the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Heat a large skillet or grill to medium high and toast the bread on each side until lightly brown about 2 – 3 minutes on each side.
Transfer the roasted tomatoes to a large mixing bowl. Add the garlic, arugula, capers, oregano and vinegar. Mix well, mashing with the fork a little, if necessary. Season with the sea salt and black pepper. Arrange the toasted baguette slices on a serving tray and top with a generous spoonful of the tomato mixture. Garnish with additional greens and the shaved Parmesan. Serve.