Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Bruschetta with homemade pesto

I decided to go simple for dinner the other night.  Salvaging through the refrigerator, I found some mozzarella and I immediately felt like bruschetta. I knew I had tons of fresh basil from my garden and I recently planted arugula, so I decided to make a pesto to go with the bruschetta.  The only bummer was that I had to buy tomatoes since my plants are taking a while.
Bruschetta can be served hot or cold, really however you like, but I decided I wanted mine warm.
This is how I made it...

Bruschetta with homemade pesto {serves 4-6 as appetizer}


  • 3 large tomatoes, seeded and diced
  • 2 cloves fresh garlic, minced
  • 3 Tbsp. fresh basil, torn
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • homemade or purchased pesto {recipe for homemade pesto below}
  • 8 oz. mozzarella, cut into thin slices
  • 1 loaf french bread or baguette, cut into 1/2-inch thick slices
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil, plus more for drizzling on bread
 Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees. Gently mix the tomatoes, minced garlic, basil, salt, pepper, and 2 Tbsp. olive oil in a small bowl and set aside.  Slice the bread and place on a foil-lined baking sheet.  Drizzle or brush with some olive oil and bake in oven for 5 minutes, or until crispy.  Remove from oven and place one slice of mozzarella on each slice of bread. Place back in oven for about 4-6 minutes, or until cheese has slightly melted.  Remove from oven and top with 1 tsp. of pesto and 1 Tbsp. of the tomato mixture.  Serve immediately.  

Homemade Pesto anyway you like
*Now arugula is a little bit on the spicier side.  If you prefer a more mild-flavored pesto, then choose basil.  I combined arugula and basil for my pesto.  Some recipes call for pine nuts or walnuts in their pesto recipes, but I decided to leave the nuts out.  Feel free to experiment!


  • 2 1/2 cups fresh basil OR fresh Arugula {I used 1 cup basil and 11/2 cups arugula}
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese 
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts or walnuts {optional...I left the nuts out}
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus more if desired
  • salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  Place basil or arugula, peeled garlic, and parmesan cheese in food processor.  Turn on processor and blend for 1 minute.  While processing, slowly add the olive oil and process for 1 more minute.  Season with salt and pepper to taste and pulse for a few seconds.  If the pesto seems to thick for your liking, you may add more olive oil.

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