Thursday, August 30, 2012


Made with yellow cherry tomatoes from my garden

What a stupendous way to use up day-old bread! The Italians know how to get the most out of everything from day-old bread, to questionable pig parts.

Though bruschetta (pronouced brew-SKETT-ah) sounds exotic, it's just toasted bread (traditionally on a grill but an oven or toaster works just as well). Of course, we are talking toast made from good crusty bread, not white sandwich bread. Something sturdy to hold a generous amount of topping and crackle when you bite into it. This is an open-faced sandwich that you eat with your hands. Though often served as an appetizer, it is hearty enough to stand as a light entree.

There are many, many possible toppings. Here's a salad turned into a topping. Don't go light on the olive oil. Tuna tends to be dry and the olive oil counteracts that. We recommend tuna packed in water because soybean oil, which is used to pack most tuna, adds no flavor. By using tuna packed in water, you can add tasty olive oil.

Bruschetta with Tomatoes and Tuna
(serves 3, cost $8.70)

1 6-oz. can tuna fish packed in water
2 + 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 Tablespoon capers, chopped
zest of 1 lemon
1 pint cherry tomatoes, cut into quarters
¼ teaspoon black pepper
6 ¾-inch thick slices crusty white or wheat bread
1 clove garlic, peeled

Preheat oven to 400°F. Drain tuna fish and put in a medium bowl. Add 2 Tablespoons olive oil, chopped capers, lemon zest, tomatoes, and black pepper. Stir to combine.

Use the remaining tablespoon of oil to brush one side of each slice of bread. Place bread on a cookie sheet in a single layer. Place bread in the hot oven and toast until golden brown and crispy. Slightly dried out bread will toast up faster. You want the toast to be crunchy and crispy, not at all soft. The amount of time will vary depending on how stale the bread is. Rub each slice of bread with garlic as soon as you take it out of the oven. Place 2 slices of toast on each plate. Heap up tuna-tomato salad on each toast slice. Sprinkle with salt and serve.

If you aren't serving all 3 portions at once, refrigerate the salad and toast the bread just before you want to serve it. It can be toasted in the toaster too, rather than the oven, if you prefer. Just make sure it's toasted enough to be crunchy-crispy!


  1. Dear SOEG,
    One suggestion to add to this and all of your fabulous articles is a pronunciation guide. The number of restaurant servers that mispronounce this (and many other dishes) is a pet peeve of mine!

    Example of how to write it into the text: Bruschetta is pronounced by the Italians as brew-SKETT-ah, and not brew-SHETT-a.

  2. I can't even get my husband to stop saying 'proscutte' for prosciutto. I wipe my hands of all those clueless servers. :-) Good suggestion, however.