I'm a bad blogger.
Other bloggers post every day, or every week. My posts are sporadic and often come more in pounding waves than a steady stream.
Other bloggers have some of the most amazing photography I've seen. My pictures have gotten better since I started my blog, but they still have a ways to go before I'm happy with their quality.
Other bloggers post recipes about ingredients that are seasonal and the perfect dish to make right now. My procrastination means that sometimes I write up posts where the peak season for a particular food may have passed.
My apologies, but today is one of those days.
So whose season is a bit belated for this post? The tomato, that's who!
Not that tomatoes are impossible to find right now, far from. But we're at the end of their peak deliciousness, so the dish that was absolutely perfect a few weeks ago will be just perfect today.
It's OK though. Because even at their less-than-perfect peakness, this just might be one of the most delicious things you've ever eaten.
I first saw the recipe on Matt Bites, which he called a Burrata grilled cheese sandwich. (He's one of the bloggers that gives me a complex with my crappy photography...) And when I was planning dishes for my wine and food-with-cheese night, I figured I could turn that recipe into a nice little make-your-own-bruschetta finger food.
The most time consuming part of this dish is making the salsa verde. And even then it's not hard- it just has a bunch of components. The only thing I take issue with is calling it "salsa". It's more of a garlicky-herb spread. But it doesn't really matter what you call it on paper, your mouth will call it delicious either way.
And the good thing about this salsa- you can freeze it! YES! I had some left over, so I decided to freeze 1 tablespoon aliquots of it that I could thaw whenever I wanted a little flavah in my life. I think it would make a great spread for almost any type of sandwich. A turkey and avocado sandwich with a little kick? Yes please!
Once the salsa is made, the rest of the dish comes together in a snap. I decided to serve my guests a deconstructed version though so that they could add as much/little of the different ingredients as they wanted. And it was a hit!
To recreate this dish at home, you'll need:
- Roasted cherry tomatoes with some chick peas, salt, and pepper mixed in
- Burrata cheese (It's fresh mozarella filled with cream. And yes, it's as delicious as it sounds...)
- French bread, toasted or not, your choice
- Salsa verde (essential)
- A good quality salami or prosciutto (optional)
- Wine (not optional)
1. Put ingredients on cute plates you just bought from CB2
3. Tell people to eat up
5. Stuff your face with bite sized pieces of heaven
7. Repeat steps 5 through 6. Multiple times.
I wish I could make this dish right now and feed you all through the interwebs. Because that's how much I want to share with everyone the deliciousness of this dish. But since I can't, I urge you all to go out and make this right now.
And even if you don't have all the ingredients on hand, or a certain ingredient doesn't sound that appealing to you, make it anyways. Play around with the recipe and adjust it to suit your likes and dislikes. It's a great recipe in that way- there's really no way to mess it up.
And trust me, your taste buds, and your friends (if you chose to share with them), will thank you.
Yours in creating bite-sized perfection,
Buratta Bruschetta, adapted from Matt Bites
Note: feel free to add or remove ingredients from the bruschetta or salsa verde as you see fit. It's definitely a great recipe to play around with to suite your tastes. And if you're worried about the salsa verde having anchovies in it, don't. It doesn't taste fishy at all. Remember, Caesar dressing has anchovies in it too, and you don't taste them in that either.
Also note: The salsa is garlicky. Big time! I think 3 pieces of garlic were a bit on the overpowering side, but it was still delicious. Cut back on the garlic if you'd like the other flavors to pop a bit more though...
8 ounces cherry tomatoes
olive oil for drizzling
salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 ounces chick peas
8 oz burrata cheese
Italian bread, sliced relatively thinly
prosciutto or thinly cut salami, optional
salsa verde (see below)
3 or 4 (3-inch-long) anchovies, rinsed and chopped, about 1 tablespoon (I used canned anchovies packed in oil. You can also use salt-packed anchovies, but if you do, rinse them well and remove the backbone)
2 tablespoons plus 1/2 teaspoon capers, rinsed and finely chopped
2-3 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 tablespoon plus 1 1/2 teaspoons coarsely chopped fresh marjoram leaves (didn't have this on hand)
1 tablespoon plus 1 1/2 teaspoon coarsely chopped fresh mint leaves
1/4 to 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1-2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
*salsa can be prepared in advance and kept in the fridge, or frozen
1. Preheat oven to 500 degrees.
2. While it's heating, prep the salsa verde: Using a small food processor/chopper, pulverize the anchovies, capers, garlic, and salt to a smooth paste. (If you don’t have one, thinly chop the ingredients and smash with a knife.) Add the parsley, marjoram, and mint and continue pulverizing to break down the herbs. Slowly add the olive oil, stirring well to combine. Season with salt and lemon juice, to taste, just before serving.
3. Cut cherry tomatoes in half (or quarter if they're really big) and spread on a small baking sheet. Drizzle with a little olive oil, salt, and pepper. Roast for 10 minutes. Remove and let cool. Toss in the chickpeas when the tomatoes are cool.
4. Cut the burrata into 1/4-inch thick slices. If you'd like, go ahead and grill or toast your bread slices.
5. Place tomatoes, burrata, salsa verde, bread, and cured meat (if using) on individual plates/platters.
6. Direct everyone to dig in!