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This is a dish to make at the height of summer, when we can celebrate the anniversary of that perfect marriage of basil and vine-ripened tomatoes. Just add a few drops of balsamic vinegar to bring out the sweetness of the tomatoes, and use a good coarse-textured, crusty bread for the bruschetta.
2 large ripe tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1/2-inch dice
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
6 slices coarse-textured country bread, cut 3/8-inch thick
2 large cloves garlic
10 fresh basil leaves
In a small bowl, toss together the tomatoes, 1 tablespoon of the olive oil, the balsamic vinegar, and salt to taste.
Under a broiler or on a wood-fired grill, toast the bread until golden on each side. Rub the bread lightly on one side with the garlic, using the toasted surface like a grater. With a pastry brush, brush on the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil.
Pile the basil leaves on top of one another, roll them up, and cut into thin ribbons. Distribute the tomato mixture evenly over the toast, garnish with the basil, and serve immediately.
Wine suggestion: Sauvignon Blanc