Garlic bread is a traditional side dish served in many Italian restaurants… just not those actually in Italy.
In Italy, you may find instead it’s leaner and lighter cousin, Bruschetta.
What is commonly – albeit erroneously – called Bruschetta abroad (i.e. toasted bread with tomatoes) in Italy is actually called Bruschetta al Pomodoro (a.k.a toasted bread with tomatoes).
The traditional Bruschetta recipe rather is made around harvest time when the just-pressed olive oil is greeny-gold and peppery. It is intended to allow one to taste the quality of the olive oil.
In Tuscany, this slick snack goes by the name of fett’unta, a term coming from ‘oily slice’.
So, how to make traditional garlic bread?
Cut your bread into slices then toast either on a barbecue or straight on the oven rack (but never under the grill).
Once each slice is nice and golden, take a peeled clove of garlic and lightly rub it on each piece of the bread.
It may seem like not much garlic is going on each slice but if you rub too much on, you’ll end up with a very spicy end result. However, since garlic is good for cholesterol, infections, ulcers, high blood pressure and for warding off the common cold (and of course, vampires), if you have need for excessive garlic, go hardy.
Next, drizzle the bread with quality olive oil. Then, sprinkle with a pinch of salt to taste. Serve hot.
Yep, Bruschetta is pretty much just really classy toast.
So now you know how to make it. But how do you pronounce Bruschetta? With your best Italian flair, try saying ‘brew-sketta’.
Yep, it’s not ‘brew-shetta’. Since the Italian alphabet doesn’t have the letter K, ‘ch’ is used to make the K sound.
Bruschetta is not a dish to serve alongside a meal, but rather either is presented as a little snack upon arrival or occasionally together with an antipasto platter.
One of the most simple and tasty recipes that takes just minutes to prepare. Well, if you don’t count growing, harvesting and pressing your own olives!
For great insight into the best places to eat in Italy, ask the locals! You can meet lots of foodie locals on our small-group Italian Food Tour in Florence.
To learn to make delicious, typical Italian recipes before indulging in a delicious meal made by you, we have hands-on cooking classes in Florence and Cooking Classes in a Tuscan Villa.