The other night I made a big pot of spicy tomato soup, and I wanted a new take on grilled cheese to go with it. I’d pinned Italian Food Forever’s bruschetta recipe, so I decided to use it as a starting point. What I came up with was super easy and really delicious. You could add so many different toppings to this recipe, so feel free to be creative with it.
All you need is a ciabatta baguette, a package of whole fresh mozzarella, about two tablespoons of olive oil, and your toppings. I used fresh basil leaves from my basil plant and a roll of Johnsonville Italian sausage.
Step 1 is to slice the baguette into rounds about 1/2 inch thick. Try to get them all the same size so that they will cook evenly.
Step 2 is to pour the olive oil onto a plate or shallow dish. Then soak each slice (one side only) in the oil for a few seconds.
Place them onto a cookie sheet oil side down. Now you are ready to add toppings. I browned the Italian sausage in a pan and topped half of the rounds with it. The other half I topped with basil leaves. You could get crazy and use both. Or you could use sage, thyme, rosemary, or pepperoni. Knock yourself out.
Cut fresh mozzarella into slices about 1 inch long and 1/4 inch thick. Place one slice on top of each ciabatta round. Sprinkle with freshly ground sea salt and black pepper.
Broil under a 500 degree broiler until the cheese is nicely browned. It shouldn’t take more than about 3-4 minutes. Serve as a snack, as a dinner bread, or as a delicious appetizer.
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