Tomato and Goat Cheese Bruschetta

This is a dish than can never go wrong. It is super easy to make, delicious yet light and healthy. It is perfect as an appetizer for a party because it doesn’t fill you up and that can mean only one thing, more room for food!

5 medium sized ripe red tomatoes
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil ( a good quality oil is important because you are consuming it raw)
5-6 cloves garlic, minced
3 tbsp dried basil
1 tbsp fresh basil, minced
1 tbsp crushed pepper ( you can leave this out if spice is not your thing)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup goat cheese
Fresh baked French baguette, sliced 1″ thin

In a mixing bowl add extra virgin olive oil, garlic, dried and fresh basil, salt and crushed red pepper. Mix well, set aside and let sit for 20-30 minutes. We want all the flavors to meld and the oil to absorb the garlic and the basil. The longer this mixture sits the better. If you don’t have 30 minutes, let sit for at least 10 minutes.

Dice all the tomatoes. If they are over ripe and extra juicy, remove the seeds along with the soft center and gently squeeze extra water from the tomatoes. Over ripe tomatoes will make the bruschetta watery and messy.

Add the tomatoes to the olive oil-garlic marinade and mix well. Set aside for 20 minutes.

Toast the sliced baguette, top with 1 tbsp of the tomato mixture and crumble goat cheese over it.  Serve while bread is warm. You could also serve without cheese, tastes great either way.

Note: Do not refrigerate the tomato mixture if you are going to serve within 4 hours. Keeping it room temperature lets the tomatoes absorb all the flavors better and it keeps the dish juicy. If you plan to serve it the next day, then refrigerate overnight, remove and leave it outside at least 4- 5 hours before you plan to serve.

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