Thursday, December 30, 2010

Fancy Tomatoes on Toast

Some might say that I am obsessed with basil. And lately I have been using it in my recipes a lot. But remember this post? Where I showed you how out of control our basil was? Well, it's gotten even more out of control and it smells and looks amazing and I just can't help it! Every time I walk past that massive bright green bush and smell the deliciousness I am just compelled to pick some and then throw it in my meal. I'm thinking a good basil pesto is in order soon, even just so we can trim the bush back a bit and allow for some new growth. I just love having fresh herbs and fruit in our garden.

We are lucky, I have lots, Oregano, Basil, Parsley (both flat and curly), sage, rosemary, mint and thyme. We also have a very prolific lemon tree, lime tree, grape vine, rocket (arugula) plants and many years tomatoes as well, which is why this recipe is one of my favourite go-to lunches and meals. Tomatoes and basil just go together and paired with the feta cheese. Damn. It's just so yummy. Fresh food is important to me, and you can't get much fresher than your own back yard. We even have our own chickens. Maybe I'll do a post about them soon. So, are any of you lucky enough to have your own veggie or herb gardens? Would you like too?

Anyway, while you ponder that question, onto the recipe!

This is kinda like the Italian appetiser Bruschetta, in that it is toasted bread topped with tomatoes. Although, not all Bruschetta has a tomato topping, and this has no garlic... So anyway. This is my spruce up of the ever wonderful tomatoes on toast, with a basil balsamic tomato salad and marinated feta. Perfect as an appetiser, light lunch, for breakfast or even (if you're like me) a last minute dinner idea for one. Now because I just made this up and consequently flew by the seat of my pants, I have no measurements for the ingredients. I'll do my best, but really, go with the flow.

Fancy Tomatoes on Toast

1 large tomato, diced (if you're feeling fancy use a mix of green, yellow and red tomatoes of all different types)
dash balsamic vinegar (if I wanted to guestimate how much I used I'd go with around 1/2 teaspoon or so, you only just want enough to coat the tomatoes, as the balsamic will draw out the tomato's natural juices)
small handful fresh basil leaves, roughly chopped
drizzle of good olive oil (I use the oil that the marinaded feta comes in)
2 slices of toast (anything from nice, fresh crusty bread, to 4 slices of baguette to a couple of slices of good ol' supermarket wonder white. I just used some supermarket GF bread. Whatever you have on hand ppl.)
4 tablespoons marinated goats feta (I just pulled that measurement out of thin air, I use enough to thickly coat my toast, this time I think I used about that much, so there you go. I have possibly over estimated (as usual) so again, use what you need to) You could also use cows feta, I just think it's not as nice as the goats feta.

Dice the tomato and put it in a small bowl along with a dash of balsamic, a good drizzle of olive oil and the chopped basil. Set aside while you toast your bread.

Once the toast is done, spread with your marinated feta (I use a fork to squish it down and spread it out), pile with tomato salad, season with salt and pepper if you wish and voila! Your meal is ready. Easy peasy.

This would also be delicious if you wanted to slice up a few olives and add them to the tomato salad just before you put it on your toast. Mmmm. 

Serves 1. 10 minutes prep time (depending how good your toaster is)

Marinated feta is yummy. We always have it in the fridge to add to salads and the like. You could make it yourself, it's not that hard. What you will need is a cold sterilised jar (follow instructions at link. Note: 110C is 230F), enough good goats feta to almost fill your jar (you want about 1cm (1/2in) at the top), good olive oil, dried herbs to season (thyme, oregano, whole black peppercorns, bay leaf and whatever you want, even a lightly crushed clove of garlic). Layer your feta and selected herbs in the jar, starting and ending with herbs. Pour over the olive oil until the feta is completely covered. Seal the jar and place in the fridge for about a week before you use it. I usually can't be bothered to do this, I just buy it from the supermarket.

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