Julie & Julia’s Bruschetta

Bruschetta Big Night
I love movies; always have. I especially love a matinee by myself, alone, in the theater.

Because I love movies, I have always loved the Oscars. Growing up my mother and I would watch every minute. We would critique the dresses, cheer for the actors we wanted to win, and jeer the ones who won when they shouldn’t have. It was a big deal, and everyone knew not to bug us while the Oscars were on. (Who could possibly be calling now?)

Now that I have my own family, I am sad to report that I am the only one who cares. This is what happens when you live with a bunch of jocks. I thought I had a partner in my glitter-loving daughter but, alas, it appears that I am destined to be alone on this red-carpeted island. My boys just stare at me blankly. My husband gives me the “You have got to be kidding me” look.

For this reason I never really get to go crazy and make themed dinners to eat while watching the show. Instead I am forced to come up with something easy for them to serve themselves while I am otherwise occupied.

A girl can dream, and if I was going to put an Oscar menu together I would pull together a few recipes my very long list of favorite—Oscar nominated or not.

Here are some recipes from that list:

Vodka Martini Shaken, Not Stirred: Any Bond movie. (I love them all.)
A nice Chianti: The Silence of The Lambs (1991)

Tomato Buschetta, see recipe below: Julie & Julia (2009)
Fried Green Tomatoes: Fried Green Tomatoes (1991)

Main Dish
Chicken Tagine: Sabrina (1995)
Hot Dogs: Bull Durham (1988)
We recommend the Miller Dogs from the Meat Counter

Reine De Saba Cake: Chocolate (2000)
Minny’s Chocolate Pie: The Help  (2011)

Julie & Julia’s Bruschetta
(adapted from recipe by food stylist Susan Spungen)

crusty rustic bread
olive oil
kosher salt
ground pepper
heirloom tomatoes
fresh basil

Cut tomatoes into chunks and tear lots of basil leaves into medium-small pieces. In a bowl, toss tomatoes and basil with a good quality olive oil. Marinate for 1 hour at room temperature.

Cut bread into slices about 3/4 inch thick

Panfry the bread in olive oil to get it toasted on the outside while retaining some softness in the center. After pan frying, rub a garlic clove over one side of the crisp bread and sprinkle with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper.

Season tomato mixture with salt and pepper about a half hour before serving. The salt makes the tomatoes release their juices and you don’t want that happening too soon.

Top bread with tomato mixture. If the bread is really crunchy, let the tomatoes sit for a few minutes before serving to soften the bread.

I used the roasted garlic bread as a shortcut which I highly recommend because that bread is amazing, but if you can’t find it just substitute with any rustic loaf with a stretchy interior with lots of holes and a crisp crust. If you go the regular rustic loaf route, the original recipe tells you to rub a whole garlic clove onto the pan fried sliced bread. That’s the only difference.

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