Posts tagged bruschetta

Who said leftovers had to be the worst part?

I hate leftovers.  Hate, hate hate.  But when you’re living on a low budget and don’t have time to create a show-stopper every night, you occasionally do have to turn to them, and in this case, it’s actually a pretty great alternative.  Since i make the bruschetta recipe that I shared with you in my last post so often, I figured I’d follow up with a way to use the leftover bruschetta for lunch or dinner the next day.  It’s an easy open-faced chicken and bruschetta sandwich, and it’s almost as good as eating it fresh!

You’ll need:

  • The leftover bruschetta
  • If you have leftover french baguette (a decent sized chunk), then you’re all set; otherwise you might want to go buy some (it’s cheap!) or use another type of bread you have in your kitchen.
  • Shredded mozzarella or parmesan cheese (you probably have this leftover as well): about a tablespoon or two
  • Grilled chicken breast.  I usually have a lot of leftover chicken, which is why this recipe works out perfectly, but if you don’t you’ll need one boneless breast
  • Black pepper
  • Garlic powder
  • olive oil

Directions:

  1. If you don’t have leftover chicken that’s been prepared already, you’ll need to either grill or saute it in a pan, and using Italian or Balsamic dressing would be your best bet.
  2. Pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees.
  3. Slice the chunk of baguette in half and lightly coat each side with olive oil.
  4. Sprinkle garlic salt and black pepper over each piece.
  5. Layer on the shredded cheese, covering the entire surface of each piece, but don’t over-do it, otherwise the bread will take longer to crisp
  6. Place the two slices of bread on a baking sheet separately (see picture below) in the oven for about 15-17 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and the edges are a crispy golden brown.
  7. When the bread is done, take it out and give it a minute to cool before adding the toppings.
  8. First layer on the bruschetta (you can add it to one side or both sides of the bread, depending on how hungry you are).
  9. Then add your sliced grilled chicken: thin slices work the best, since it’s already a pretty hefty sandwich. 
  10. If you’d like top it off with some black pepper or parsley, but not too much, since the bruschetta already has a lot of spices in it.


And that’s all!  If you already have all the leftovers, it’s a zero-cost meal.  Enjoying the sandwich with a salad makes for a healthy option: you’ve got your greens and protein covered.  Not too mention it’s delicious and will keep you full for the rest of the day.  Enjoy!

Here’s a picture step by step:

The short and sweet ingredients list:

Slice the baguette evenly:

Brush with olive oil and sprinkle black pepper and garlic salt, then add the shredded cheese:

Throw the bread in the oven at 375 for about 15-17 minutes:

When it’s out, give it a few minutes then add the bruschetta topping and grilled chicken (sorry this picture is blurry!)

Now you’re ready to serve, here’s the finished product:

Looking for some other recipes to incorporate leftovers into?  Check out these great resources:

TheLeftoverChef.com: just like it sounds, tons of great leftover recipes

A leftover recipes index from TerisKitchen.com

One of my favorite websites that shares recipes using leftovers to save time (perfect!)

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This one’s for Mom

This is hands down the easiest recipe you’ll ever use.  It’s my Mom’s favorite, and every time I come home the first thing she does is tell me to make it (if she’s not home she’ll leave a note telling me to, because she wants it ready for when she gets home).  I turn to it for parties, dinners, snacks… you name it and I guarantee you, this one’s a winner.  It’s bruschetta that’s based off a recipe I got from an easy Italian recipe book made by Hunt’s, and it’s so simple but so delicious (the perfect combo if you ask me).  If you’re like me and your kitchen is always fully stocked with spices, then you’re good to go.  If not, you may have to grab a few things or skip a few steps.  It’s always beneficial to keep the basic spices around if you ask me, and if you’ve been reading most of my posts, you’ll notice they certainly won’t go to waste (I use basil, oregano and black pepper in anything I possibly can).  Without further delay, I give you my favorite recipe of all time:

You’ll need:

  • One 28 oz can of Petite Diced Tomatoes (the original kind works best), or smaller if you’re serving less people
  • Olive oil
  • Chopped garlic. The wet kind that comes in a jar works great for this recipe, but you can also use cloves
  • Dried garlic powder (yes you’ll need this kind in addition to the other kind)
  • Dried oregano
  • Dried basil
  • Dried crushed red pepper(only a dash or so)
  • Ground black pepper
  • A dash of salt to taste
  • French baguette: one loaf is sufficient for this recipe, but if you’re serving a lot more people you may want to double the recipe and buy two baguettes
  • Mozzarella or Parmesan: you won’t need more then a quarter of a bag or a single block if you’re grating

Directions:

  1. I like to start with the bread so I can prepare the bruschetta while the bread is in the oven.  Preheat your oven to 400 degree and slice up the baguette into relatively thin slices (maybe half an inch) and place them on a baking sheet.
  2. Next brush every piece with olive oil.  Then sprinkle garlic powder over every piece, as well as black pepper. 
  3. Then sprinkle every piece with shredded cheese (or if some of your friends or family don’t like cheese, only sprinkle half of the pieces).  Stick the baking sheet into the oven for about 13-15 minutes, or until the bread is golden brown and crispy on the outside.
  4. Now you’re ready to start the bruschetta.  Drain the can of diced tomatoes, making sure all the extra juice is gone, and place them in a medium-sized bowl.
  5. Next add the olive oil.  I’m not a big fan of measuring things out when I cook, but my guess would be about a tablespoon and a half.  As long as it looks like the tomatoes are moist enough (without being soaked) in olive oil, you’re probably good.
  6. Then toss in about a tablespoon of the canned chopped garlic and stir everything together.
  7. After that throw in the dried spices: oregano, basil and a dash of crushed red pepper.  I would say use about two teaspoons of the basil and oregano, maybe more.  You want the mixture to look about two parts red and one part green once everything is stirred together.
  8. Add about a teaspoon of black pepper and sprinkle salt to taste.
  9. Stir everything thoroughly, but not too much since you don’t to come up with some sort of tomato sauce
  10. When your bread is done, let it sit for a few minutes, then arrange the pieces on a serving tray.
  11. Place a spoonful of the bruschetta on each piece of bread, making sure not to load too much on each piece so it’s not hard to pick up the bread and eat it.
  12. If you have some dried parsley powder around, it’s nice to sprinkle some on each piece of bread.  The green adds a pretty touch.

Here’s a visual guide:

Starting with the bread gives you time to make the bruschetta, so that the bread is done around the same time the mixture is done, and you’re ready to go faster.

Strain the tomatoes:


Next add all your spices:

Take out your bread and let it cool for a few minutes:

Place a spoonful of bruschetta on each piece of bread and you’re ready to serve:

And that’s all!  Easy enough, right?  It’s so fast, and everyone loves it (ask my friends and family, they’ll attest).  The best part is, if you have leftovers you can do almost anything with it: put it on chicken or steak, on top of salad, or just on it’s with wheat thins or pretzels.  Another Italian classic done easy and cheap… enjoy!

Here’s some other tasty bruschetta recipes to try:

A fresh bruschetta recipe from Giada de Laurentiis of the Food Network

An extensive guide to from Bruschettarecipe.org

About.Com\’s bruschetta page featuring a variety of ideas and recipes to try

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