Last night for dinner, we had bruschetta. Not the traditional version, with the garlic-rubbed grilled bread and the cold toppings. MY version, that includes piping hot yummy toppings with melted cheese. Also known as The Fastest Dinner Ever that Doesn't Involve Take-Out.
It's pretty much an open-faced grilled cheese sandwich. And who doesn't like grilled cheese?
It's fast, super easy, and most of the ingredients are things I usually have on hand anyway. Or, the toppings can be adjusted to include whatever you have on hand. It's very versatile! And did I mention, gooey cheese?!
- French bread
- Unsalted Butter (softened & spreadable)
- Italian Parsley
- Havarti Cheese (sliced)
- Gouda Cheese (sliced)
- Roasted Peppers (in the jar, it's about speed)
- Prosciutto (thin sliced)
That's it! I prepped 8 pieces because there were only two of us, but there's enough ingredients here to assemble twice that.
Start by slicing and buttering your bread.
Arrange the buttered bread on a sheet pan. As always, spray the pan first - melty cheese is hell to scrub off.
Toast under the broiler until the bread looks extra yummy. Watch it closely! As you can see, I left it in about 15 seconds too long.
Once the bread is done, set it aside and preheat your oven to 425º.
Next, chop your parsley.
Drain the peppers and lay them out on paper towels to dry a bit. If the peppers are wet, they'll make the bread soggy. No one likes soggy bread.
Peel apart the prosciutto slices (they come packed with plastic sheets between the slices); I did about a slice and a half per slice of bread. If your cheese slices are much bigger than the pieces of bread (mine were), cut them in half; I did one half slice of each type of cheese per piece of bread.
Now it's time to assemble! First, prosciutto.
Then, a sprinkle of parsley.
Then roasted peppers, topped with some salt (lightly with the salt, the prosciutto and the cheese are both salty) and as much pepper as you feel like.
Finally, the whole thing goes into the oven (425º, remember?) for about 15 minutes; but keep an eye on it! In fact, it's probably best to set the timer for 10 minutes and check it. We like our cheese really melted and starting to toast - but some folks like their cheese not-so-cooked.
Yay! Dinner's done! And hardly any dishes!
- Caprese, layering sliced tomatoes and basil over the prosciutto, with fresh mozzarella on top.
- Antipasto, layering salami or soppressata on the bread, topped by roasted peppers and chopped olives, and basil, with provolone. You can get all the fancy meats at pretty much any decent grocery store deli these days.
- Sausage & Peppers, layering sliced (cooked) Italian sausage on the bread, followed by roasted peppers, parsley, and any cheese you like.
- Pesto & Goat Cheese, layering prosciutto with a dollop of pesto (jarred is awesome!), followed by crumbles of goat cheese and few pine nuts.