Tasty Toast – Bruschetta
I’m pretty sure that almost everyone who has ever sailed has faced the situation when there has been too much bread left onboard. Usually, this bread ends up in the sea as food or a bait for fish.
Still, there are some yachtsmen (like me) who do not allow the wasting of food and bread that is neither eaten nor fresh any more. The simplest and probably the most efficient way to use the bread is to grill it or toast it in the oven (if there is no toaster onboard).
When the bread is grilled you can easily rub it with garlic, pour few drops of virgin olive oil, add some salt and pepper and serve it as a snack or a starter/appetizer. This would be the description of the original bruschetta, a traditional antipasto (starter/appetizer) in Italy.
According to some traditional food researchers, olive growers in ancient Rome used roasted slices of bread to taste the freshly made olive oil to determine the quality of the very first oil of the season, and, consequently, to determine the price of it. Afterwards, they went beyond tasting and accepted it as a delicious meal.
Some other sources claim that serving grilled bread with some types of salami or aged paste made of raw pork products with spices was the traditional way of salvaging the bread that was becoming stale.
However, there are hundreds of ideas to prepare a delicious bruschetta and I am always delighted when I have the chance to taste a new one. Probably the most common or the most popular bruschetta is prepared with chopped fresh tomato, onions, basil and olive oil on the top of the roasted bread. I would call this a basic bruschetta. Next step for upgrade would be adding capers and small pieces of salted anchovies or sardines in it. Likewise, some would say that a good bruschetta must always be prepared with mozzarella cheese. Also, meat lovers would put prosciutto or some sausages into it etc.
I hope I have inspired you to prepare tasty toasts onboard and encouraged you to treat your bread supplies more responsibly…
I wish you a calm sea, a fine wind and a strong mast!