Bruschetta a la Julie & Julia

Last weekend I watched Julie and Julia with my mom. If you haven’t seen it, I suggest you do so, post haste! It’s a cute film, and has some pretty funny parts, including Meryl Streep (as Julia Childs) calling a pan “hotter than a hard cock.”

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If you have seen it, you’ll certainly remember the Bruschetta scene. I was salivating, and haven’t been able to clear my mind of it ever since. Today I was fully intending to stay in my pajamas and not leave the house. But then I got to thinking about what I’d be making for dinner, and of course, Bruschetta popped into my mind, like it has every day this week when I start thinking about food.

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Really the only difference between a traditional bruschetta and Julie Powel’s is instead of toasting the bread on a grill then drizzling it with olive oil, the bread is pan fried in olive oil (and in my case, a little butter). You achieve the same flavor combination, but a MUCH better texture by pan frying the bread.

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Since none of my non-cherry tomatoes are ripe yet, I had to go to the store for them. Luckily, QFC recently began carrying heirloom tomatoes, so I got the mind blowing colors and flavors of heirlooms without having to go to a farmers market. I used 3 large heirlooms, plus 2 vine ripened hot house tomatoes that I had sitting in the pantry looking for a noble purpose. I also added a small handful of fresh basil and a few snippets of fresh parsley from my herb garden.

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I served it with a simple grilled chicken breast, sliced and split in two. It was a very filling meal and oh so satisfying. I’m pretty sure this’ll be a weekly occurrence. I’m having trouble coming up with a better food to entertain with also. So all of you people reading my blog that come over for dinner occasionally, be warned.

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6 thoughts on “Bruschetta a la Julie & Julia

  1. I tried doing this too because like you, I also obsessed about this dish the moment I saw it from Julie and Julia.. In my version of Bruschetta, I added a green bell peppers instead of Basil because I didn't have any Basil available at that time.. It tasted delicious just the same.. However, I seem to have done something wrong in frying because the bread (even if it was yummy) was too oily for me.. Would you know a way to avoid this?

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  2. Christine – I've never heard of someone substituting green peppers for basil, I can't imagine that would provide the same family of flavors, nor the same texture, but if it was good, I'll have to try it!

    When you pan fry at too low a temperature or with too much grease, the item that you're frying is more likely to absorb too much oil. I just put a tiny bit of butter and oil in the pan, just enough to coat the side, and that all crisped up. Perhaps you just used a little too much fat?

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  3. I have been obsessed with the dish like you both since I saw Julie and Julia. Unfortunetly I am a starving college student so I havent had the money to try it till last week. Instead of parsley I added some Thyme and covered the bread with a garlic butter (it was all I had) before cooking it in the oil. It was a really big hit with my friends.

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