Food Sense

Bruschetta With Arugula Pesto

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Just in time for a lovely spring weekend, this post came to me from guest blogger Sam Peters. Enjoy her take on an easy spring snack, one that might just make its way into your picnic basket this weekend.

Do you have a go-to snack, a food that you always turn to when you seek something easy, delicious, and fresh? Do you always keep the ingredients for this snack readily available in your kitchen? If you had to choose just a couple foods for emergency storage, would this snack make the list?

I don’t know about you, but here’s my answer to the above three questions: yes, yes, and yes.

For a while I didn’t have a go-to snack. Instead, I went through phases characterized by hummus dips, carrots, pita chips, granola, and rice cakes. I toasted bread to dip in olive oil and made my fair share of peanut butter sandwiches. These snacks were all fine, to be sure, but none stood out for its ease and quality. None made me want to eat it again, and again, and again—until I ate nothing else between lunch and dinner.

But then I discovered bruschetta with arugula pesto.

I had finally found my go-to snack—and it’s a delicious option that truly works great in every situation. After a long day of work I can whip together the dish in no time. While trying to impress guests I have no doubt what appetizer to make. And these days, as the sun grows stronger and spring gradually arrives, there is no better way to usher in the season than by slicing some bread, making some pesto, and enjoying a fresh bruschetta snack.

In fact, bruschetta with pesto is truly the ideal summer snack: it tastes green and natural but also has a crispyness that epitomizes the renewal of the season and the excitement of the summer to come. Eating the dish on a mild spring day—especially one that offers a warm breeze and the smell of flowers in the air—makes for the perfect complement of senses, tastes, and feels.

Here are the directions:

Step 1: Make the pesto
-Combine arugula, grated cheese, walnuts, and olive oil into a blender. The best cheese option is parmesan but a sharp cheddar can work just as well. (As for the arugula, the leaf adds a tangy bite to the pesto but often spoils quickly. I usually address this issue by freezing my arugula.)
-Blend all these items together until they have become liquefied. You can then add more cheese, arugula, and olive oil as needed to match your taste specifications.

Step 2: Make the tomato spread
-Cut up onions and tomatoes into small cubes. The ratio should probably be 3:2 in favor of tomatoes, although this is certainly a matter of personal preference.
-Mix the onions and tomatoes in a bowl and add basil, garlic, salt, and pepper.
-Let the bowl sit for 30 minutes to an hour.

Step 3: Make the bread
-Slice a loaf of French bread and then toast the pieces until they are lightly crisped.

Step 4: Put it all together
-Spread a layer of pesto on top of the pieces of French bread.
-Spoon the tomato mixture on top of the pesto layer.
-Lay the bread slices on a tray and put the tray into the oven. Bake for about ten minutes and then remove.

So there you have it: bruschetta with arugula pesto. It’s that easy and – trust me – it’s also that good. If you don’t believe me, feel free to try the recipe for yourself, ideally sometime soon while spring still lingers in the air. Enjoy!

Samantha Peters is a passionate food blogger who loves writing about preparing delicious and healthy snack ideas.

Photo: Flickr member fifikins

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