Taste of Italy: Bruschetta

bruscetta recipe

The Italians are masters at putting tasty toppings on bread. They invented pizza and who doesn’t love pizza? Another favourite of mine is bruschetta – a beautiful mixture of simple yet delicious ingredients that’s a classic Italian appetizer. Although I’ve eaten this many times, I’ve never made it myself so thought this would be a nice easy one to reignite my ‘Taste of’ cooking challenge.

I started this back in May – cooking-up a Middle Eastern meal of falafel and tabouli salad. But in the months following, I struggled to keep it up. Well, I’m getting myself back into gear and you can expect this to be a regular feature here on See My Travels!

Even though Bruschetta is traditionally a starter, I decided to make it as a main meal. To do this I just upped the portion size and added a rocket salad and pineapple cottage cheese on the side. It was delizioso!

The following recipe is enough for two people and takes around 15 minutes to make, including preparation time.

Bruschetta Ingredients

  • 3/4 of large French baguette
  • Handful of fresh basil
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 4 large good-quality ripe tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon of balsamic vinegar
  • Salt and pepper

Cooking Instructions

  1. Slice the baguette, dip both sides in olive oil and toast.
  2. Place tomatoes in boiling water, off the heat, for a few minutes to soften them.
  3. Remove the skin, deseed and finely chop the tomatoes
  4. Finely chop  the garlic and basil
  5. Mix everything together
  6. Add the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper
  7. Serve with the topping already on the bread, or put the bowl out and let people help themselves

 bruschetta recipe

History of Bruschetta

Whereas the first pizza was made in Naples during the late 19th century, bruschetta is believed to have originated in Central Italy in the 15th Century. The name derives from the word ‘bruscare’ meaning ‘roast over coals’. Originally, the recipe didn’t include tomatoes and consisted of stale bread, rubbed with olive oil and garlic, roasted in a coal oven (which basically sounds like garlic bread).

It was considered food for the poor and was seen as an easy way to feed farm workers. Over the years the traditional recipe has been adapted to include tomatoes, basil and balsamic vinegar. But nowadays you can make your own toppings. When I was researching bruschetta recipes, people were adding all kinds of ingredients from steak and chicken to avocado, mushroom and feta cheese.

Italy Wish List 

Besides a quick overnight trip to Milan yonks ago and a school skiing trip to the Ravascletto resort in the Friuli-Venezia Giulia region, near the border with Austria and Slovenia, I haven’t travelled much in Italy. I’d love to get to Rome, Florence, Venice, Naples, Bologna and the Dolomites.

Do you like Bruschetta? Have you ever made this yourself? 


  1. October 19, 2013 / 03:26

    I love Bruschetta. Thanks for the recipe.

    • November 21, 2013 / 11:07

      Certainly is, easy to throw together (quite literally!)

  2. November 1, 2013 / 22:16

    Italy does simple food like this so well – looks delicious (especially so as I’ve had to give up gluten for a while so it’s even more tempting!)
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  3. November 12, 2013 / 18:09

    This is one really easy Italian speciality that can go surprisingly so wrong. It’s also surprising how different all the recipes are for bruschetta too, for example this is different to how my Italian partner’s family do it in the south.

    • November 21, 2013 / 10:56

      Yikes, I’m sure my ‘attempt’ hasn’t got anything on that ha ha. Lucky you for having some delizioso Italian flavour in your life ;-)