Sometimes, you just have to go with a craving, even if it means you end up with a mismatched meal. This past Saturday the hubby and I, along with the three boys headed out early to the South of the James @ Forest Hill Farmers Market. I didn't even know we had a South of the James market...we Southsiders tend to be left out of the loop so to speak. My neighbor had found the place and told me all about it, I was so excited.
I'm happy to report we weren't disappointed. There was a little music, a bunch of craft exhibits, great smelling food and lots and lots of fresh produce. (It's small of course, nothing like the big fancy ones, but I'll take what they have to offer and run with it!)
I was really wanting to make up a bunch of fresh foods so hence, my mismatched hodgepodge of a meal.
T and I were seriously craving some bruschetta, so I decided to take full advantage of our market finds and make a pesto based, Mozzarella Tomato and Basil Bruschetta, and it was pure heaven!
2 cups fresh basil leaves, packed
½ cup freshly grated Parmesan-Reggiano or Romano cheese
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup pine nuts
3 medium sized garlic cloves, minced
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1. Combine the basil in with the pine nuts, pulse a few times in a food processor. Add the garlic, pulse a few times more.
2. Slowly add the olive oil in a constant stream while the food processor is on. Stop to scrape down the sides of the food processor with a rubber spatula. Add the grated cheese and pulse again until blended. Add a pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. Makes 1 cup
Sliced Tomato Topping
1 large tomato
¼ cup olive oil
2-3 garlic cloves, minced
1. Make a small slit in the skin of your tomato and drop into a pot of boiling water. Boil for 45 seconds - 1 minute. Remove tomato and place immediately into an ice bath.
2. Peel the tomato, remove all seeds and dice.
3. Mix tomato with olive oil and minced garlic.
Bring 1 cup balsamic vinegar to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for about 15 minutes, or until reduced by half. You know it's done when it sticks to the back of a wooden spoon. If you like yours a little sweeter, add in a ¼ cup light brown sugar before starting the boiling process.
Garlic Infused Butter
1 stick of butter, clarified
3 garlic cloves, peeled/whole
Clarify 1 stick of butter, add in your garlic cloves and marinate for about 20 minutes. Remove garlic and that's it!
Pesto based Mozzarella, Basil and Tomato Bruschetta
Slice up a crusty french loaf on the bias, place slices on a sheet pan. Brush each slice with Garlic Infused Butter and bake at 375° for about 3 minutes. Remove the pan, on each slice, spread pesto, layer with a slice of fresh mozzarella cheese and basil. Place the pan back in the oven and bake until the cheese in melted. Top each with fresh tomatoes and drizzle with balsamic reduction.
We also found potatoes and onion and garlic at the market so I decided to throw it all together and roast a chicken. Ina has an amazing roast chicken recipe, I just unfortunately forget to pick up leeks. Watch her video on this one, it's worth the 5 minutes. I don't have a picture of the finished product, my family inhaled it...must have been good!
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