I love bruschetta. This excellent Italian appetizer will conquer your heart, and you will return for more.

Do I have a fantastic and super easy recipe to make this summer, or all year round, for that matter?

Bruschetta with tomatoes, anchovy and garlic

In this Article

What is bruschetta?

Bruschetta is an Italian antipasto, appetizer if you prefer,  that consists of grilled bread rubbed with fresh garlic and topped with olive oil and sea salt.

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This is the authentic Italian version.

In Italy, local bread is used and cut into thick slices. Once grilled, the outer is crispy and the inner part of the bread still a bit soft.

Enjoyed still a bit warm, it is just an excellent addictive nibble or alongside some roasted vegetables.

The perfect partner for “pasta aglio e olio. or “pasta all’arrabiata”. Either pasta had a garlic undertone which works well together.

What bread to use?

Italian bread goes without saying. Ciabatta sliced on a diagonal pattern will make for a beautiful presentation.

You can use a French baguette if you cannot find fresh Italian bread.

The same here. Slice it on the diagonal to have more of a slice of bread. The thickness is up to you.

When served with a cocktail pre-dinner, I do like to slice my bread a bit thinner so my guests will not get stuffed with bread and not eat my dinner.

Use a simple appetizer followed by a light dinner, then slice the bread a bit thicker.

To simplify things, although the original recipe requires grilling the bread, I use my oven at a very high temperature. Broiling your bread also will give it that grilled feel.

However, keep a keen eye over your bread as it will turn into burn rather fast when under the broiler.

How are you supposed to eat bruschetta?

Almost right out of the grill. Let it cool off enough to handle and then rub the garlic over it with a splash of very good olive oil.

Why rub the raw garlic after grilling?

Once the bread is grilled, or toasted in my case here, the soft part of the bread will have natural ridges formed by the knife that cut thru, and the bread’s natural formation will have small ridges.

Those rough ridges are perfect for the next step—the garlic.

By rubbing the raw garlic, the garlic’s natural oil, and essence will be released on the bread giving it that savory taste that we all love.

Just enough will be released to make it delicious but not overpowering.

Bruschetta with tomatoes, anchovy and garlic

Tomato bruschetta recipe

With the abundance of fresh tomatoes all over our markets, it comes in order that fresh tomatoes be used as a topping.

Freshly cut, all seeds removed and so fragrant, fresh tomatoes are just heavenly with all your summer dinners.

I like to use plum tomatoes, which are the long ones. They have fewer seeds and are more pulpous. Regular tomatoes are a perfect alternative.

Select ripe tomatoes for this dish. You want the full richness of a mature tomato to bite into.

I would not encourage you to use cherry tomatoes as they are too small and you will need more than necessary to make this dish.

I enjoy this super easy summer recipe of bruschetta as an easy summer dinner with a chilled glass of white wine.

Bruschetta with tomatoes, anchovy and garlic

Should the tomatoes be seeded for bruschetta?

Yes, you do want to remove the seeds. However, keep them for later to be used in soups or tomato sauce if you wish. Using the seeds in this dish will make the bread soggy if left on it too long.

Very easy to remove the seeds: just cut the tomato in half and scoop it with a spoon. That is all you need to do.

Use a sharp knife, my favorite when cutting tomatoes is Wusthof Classic Santoku Knife. The hollow portion of the blade allows a clean cut and no attachment to the blade from your ingredient.

Why anchovies?

The anchovies are pretty predominant in Italian cooking, mainly in southern Italy. You will find them frequently on menus, and they are fresh and abundant on the Mediterranean Sea.

They are sold salt-cured, my favorite,  mostly oil-packet, as I have used here.

You will find them rolled in a can, which I do not recommend purchasing because they are hard to store, and you will toss them.

I strongly suggest buying the anchovies in a glass jar, which is easy to use and store.

You will also find anchovy paste, but I will not recommend using it here.

The fish taste pretty fishy and salty; therefore, this recipe has little to no salt added to it. Anchovies give your dishes an excellent, uplifting taste.

They dissolve; thus, you will not see them in your dish but they are very savory.


Fresh basil is a must and one of the main ingredients in this bruschetta recipe. Do not use dry basil as it will not have the same flavor. You want the basil freshness to uplift this dish.

Select it by ensuring the basil leaves are nicely green, have that fresh scent, and are sturdy and not limp.

Bruschetta with tomatoes, anchovy and garlic

How to make this bruschetta with tomatoes, anchovies, and garlic

The beauty of this dish is that you can prepare the tomatoes early in the day, refrigerate them and bring them back to room temperature before serving them.

I also do not use a grill. You can either toast the bread in a very hot oven or if you have, use a grill pan over your stovetop.

  • I like to start with the bread and cut it while the oven warms up.
  • Place it on a cookie sheet; parchment paper is optional if you use your oven.
  • Brush the bread with olive oil and bake in the hot oven for 4 to 5 minutes. Every oven is not the same. You want a beautiful golden but not burning.
  • Cut the ripe tomatoes into small cubes, 1/4 of an inch, and place them in a mixing bowl. You want plenty of tomatoes on your tomato bruschetta.
  • Use a good balsamic vinegar
  • The sugar is to counterbalance the acidity of the balsamic and the tomato
  • Splurge a bit by using an excellent extra virgin olive oil.
  • Do mince the basil at the last minute so it will keep its beautiful green color.
  • Once the bread is out, wait until cool enough to handle and rub the garlic over the bread.
  • Place a generous scoop of tomato over the bread and serve.

Pro Tips

If you are serving it for a party, you want to mind that the tomatoes do not stay too long on the bread and make it soggy.

I recommend preparing a couple of slices and placing the tomatoes into a crock or container, with the bread alongside, so your guests can prepare a bruschetta by themselves.

If you enjoy this Italian bruschetta, check out these flavorful recipes:

Tomato Soup

Fresh Herbs, Garlic and Salt Rub

Pomegranate, Blackberries Sauce With Pork Tenderloin

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Bruschetta with tomatoes, anchovy and garlic


Bruschetta with Tomato, Anchovy, and Garlic

5 from 36 votes
Bruschetta with tomatoes, anchovy and garlic
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 4 minutes
Total Time: 19 minutes
Servings: 2 people
The excellent Italian appetizer till conquer your heart, and you will go back for more.


  • 8 slices Bread
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, halved
  • 3 plum tomatoes, seeded and chopped into ¼-inch pieces
  • 2 anchovies, minced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh basil, minced
  • ½ teaspoon balsamic vinegar,
  • ¼ teaspoon sugar
  • salt and pepper


  • Preheat the oven to 500F.
  • Brush the olive oil over the sliced bread and toast the bread slices on a baking sheet in the upper third of the oven for 4 minutes, or until they are golden.
  • In a mixing bowl combine the tomatoes, the anchovies, the basil, the balsamic vinegar, the sugar, the remaining olive oil, and salt and pepper to taste, and top the toasts with the mixture.


Calories: 458kcal | Carbohydrates: 58g | Protein: 14g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 11g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 2mg | Sodium: 539mg | Potassium: 407mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 885IU | Vitamin C: 14mg | Calcium: 162mg | Iron: 5mg

Giangi’s Kitchen provides nutritional information, but these figures should be considered estimates, as a registered dietician does not calculate them.

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