Lots of versions of bruschetta are available with all sorts of extras, olives, vinegar, capers, everything from soup to nuts. I prefer the plain, “just the basics, please” toppings on grilled or baked slices of good bread — tomatoes, basil, salt, pepper and a touch of good olive oil.
I take several tomatoes; Roma or plum tomatoes are ideal, but any kind will do in a pinch. No need to peel them. I chop them up and drain some, but not all, of the juice from them. Then I get a handful of fresh basil. Never, never, never even think about using dried basil for this. No. Get fresh basil, rough chop it or stack some leaves, roll them like tobacco leaves and slice as for chiffonade. Add the basil to the tomatoes. Now mince as much garlic as you can tolerate and mix it in with the tomatoes and basil. I use 1-2 cloves for every 3 tomatoes. Sprinkle with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Drizzle with some extra virgin olive oil and set aside while you prepare the bread.
I use a baguette, or a loaf of Italian or French bread, if I don’t have some of my own homemade bread handy. Slice the bread as thick as you would like it, grill it on both sides (you can get away with broiling it or even baking it for 10-15 minutes in a medium oven), then rub it with the cut side of a garlic clove. It is now ready to serve with the pomodoro topping.
This is one of those recipes that you can adapt to suit your taste. Use as many tomatoes as you think will be needed, usually 1 per person for a hearty serving, 1 tomato for 2 people if you are serving lots of other food. Then you judge the amount of basil and garlic to taste. You can tell by looking when you have enough basil. The tomatoes are the main ingredient. The basil is essential but should not detract from the tomatoes. The garlic adds the “oomph” and salt and pepper and olive oil make it all come together to complement the bread. I could make a meal of it. Give me some cheese, and maybe a slice or two of salami or proscuitto, some wine and bye-bye.
Try it. By the way, it is pronounced “brusk-etta” not “brooshetta.”