Since I’m on a cocktail party / finger food kick, I thought I’d keep with the theme and offer up a slightly more frugal appetizer to balance out the cost of the Citrus Shrimp I wrote about yesterday.
It’s all about the yin and the yang, friends. A balanced grocery budget equals happiness at home.
And actually, it’s not that I think the Citrus Shrimp was expensive to make – at 9.99/pound, shrimp is quite a bargain this week. Not as cheap as saltines and squeeze cheese, but seriously, would anyone serve that at a cocktail party? I like to think not…well, not if you want people to come back, anyway. We might be frugal, but we must maintain some hostessing standards, right?
I saw these gorgeous, ruby red romas on sale and just knew I had to use them for something this week. I searched all my recipes and settled on this lovely bruschetta. Certainly company-worthy, it’s savory, garlicky, creamy, and crunchy – while at the same time, friendly on the pocketbook!
The tomatoes are tossed with a bit of olive oil (I used the extra virgin Davinci oil that’s on sale), sugar, and dried herbs, and slow roasted for nearly two hours. After that, they’re marinated (I did mine over night, but you wouldn’t have to go that long if you were in a hurry) in garlic and fresh basil …. Good Lord, they are fabulous!
If you’re not a fan of goat cheese, you could easily substitute in ricotta or even marscapone. Heck, you could skip the cheese part altogether if you felt like it (or if you forgot to put it in your cart)! The tomato mixture could easily be used to top sautéed fish or grilled chicken, if you have any left over. I kinda doubt you will, though. Enjoy!
ROASTED ROMA TOMATO & GOAT CHEESE BRUSCHETTA
Makes 6 Appetizer Portions
- 2 pounds roma tomatoes, quartered top to bottom, cored, and seeds scooped out with a spoon
- Olive oil
- 1 t. herbs d’ Provence, dried oregano, or dried basil (you can’t mess it up, trust me!)
- 1 t. sugar
- 1 t. salt
- 1 large clove garlic, minced
- 1 large pinch of fresh basil, cut into chiffonade
- Your favorite baguette, sliced and grilled (I used a demi baguette and got about six 1” thick slices)
- Your favorite goat cheese (I used a log of Soignon)
Preheat the oven to 325. Place 2 T. olive oil in the bottom of a 9×13 Pyrex dish. Place the tomatoes, cut side up, in the dish. Drizzle with another tablespoon of oil. Sprinkle with the dried herbs, the sugar, and the salt. Roast tomatoes in the oven for one hour. Remove, turn tomatoes over, and continue to roast for an additional 45 minutes, or until they’re deep red and beginning to char a bit. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
When cool enough to handle, cut the quartered tomatoes into a large dice. Place them in a glass mixing bowl and add the garlic, basil, and any accumulated oil from the baking pan. Allow to stand at room temperature for an hour or so, or refrigerate overnight.
Spread each slice of baguette with some goat cheese. Top with the tomato mixture and place on a pretty platter. Garnish with additional basil sprigs if desired!
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