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Tomato and Garlic Bruschetta

Heirloom Tomato Bruschetta
I grow tomatoes in my garden during the summer, and that typically means that my kitchen is completely overflowing with tomatoes. My tomatoes seem to ripen in waves, so when I have a fresh batch, I usually rush to use them up before the next wave hits. I make pasta sauce with fresh tomatoes and store it in the freezer for later use. I make gazpacho, salads and tomato gratins. But no matter how many variations I make, I never get tired of simple Tomato and Garlic Bruschetta.

This recipe is very easy and really showcases fresh tomatoes when they are at their best. The tomatoes are tossed in a little bit of homemade garlic-infused olive oil before being piled on top of garlic-kissed pieces of toasted baguette. It couldn’t be any simpler, and I love the fact that all I need to pick up at the store to make this is a baguette! I will make these as an easy summertime appetizer or even turn them into a light meal for myself if I feel like grazing on a lazy weekend afternoon.

Since the salt can get a little lost in the tomato juice of especially sweet heirloom tomatoes, I often sprinkle these with a touch of coarse sea salt just before serving to make sure the sweetness of the tomatoes really pops. The tomatoes should be prepared the day you want to serve them, however you can save leftover topping for tossing with fresh pasta or for a second batch the next day because they will still taste fantastic.

Tomato and Garlic Bruschetta
1/2 cup olive oil
4 large cloves garlic, minced (1 1/2 tbsp minced)
2 1/2 lbs heirloom tomatoes, diced (approx 4 cups)
salt and pepper, to taste
1-2 baguettes

In a small saucepan, combine olive oil and garlic. Bring to a simmer and allow garlic to cook for 1 minute. Remove from heat and allow oil to cool to room temperature, about 15 minutes.
Preheat oven to 400F. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper.
Slice baguette into 1/2-inch thick slices and arrange on prepared baking sheet. Brush both sides of bread lightly with garlic-infused olive oil. Combine all remaining oil with diced tomatoes in a large bowl, season with salt and pepper, and set aside.
Toast bread in the oven for about 4-5 minutes per side, or until lightly browned, turning once to get an even brown. When bread is toasted, transfer to a serving platter and top generously with scoops of the oil-tomato mixture.
Serve immediately.

Serves 8-12.

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