I’ve been sick. Hence the lack of posts recently. I went out Newport Beach with Reed for a lovely weekend away but on the way back I picked up the flu. Yesterday I couldn’t even get out of bed but luckily I had an interesting book that I have to finish for my book club this weekend.
In the past when I haven’t been felling well my cat, Bounce, has looked at me with eyes that said, ‘Why are you being such a loser mom? Let’s play!’. But this time she curled up next to me in bed for most of the day. I think she’s maturing.
I’ve been drinking oodles of diet ginger ale, tea and soup. One bad thing about liking to cook is that it ruins canned soups for you and when you’re home alone and sick the idea of simply opening a can of chicken noodle soup for dinner sounds wonderful. And then you taste it and its all salt, mushy noodles, and more salt. This morning I finally had the energy to get up and make split pea soup. So much better but I didn’t have the energy to take pictures so its not going to be on the blog any time soon.
Instead, before I got sick I recreated of couple items that we had while we were in California. First up is the bruschetta. We were staying at the Pelican Hill Resort, we had our lunch at Rose Cafe and then we have early morning flight to LA and the drive down we decided to have an early dinner at one of the resort restaurants. Since we were early we got their best table. Having a relaxing dinner while we watched the sun set over the Pacific made me the 4am wake up call all worth it.
To start off with ordered the bruschetta, roast asparagus, and grilled artichokes. I’d assumed the portions would be small. In NYC they’re usually pretty tiny but not at Pelican Hill. I could have make a whole meal with just the bruschetta. The bruschetta came with three topping; burrata cheese, wild mushrooms with herbs, and fresh tomato.
The burrata bruschetta was my favorite but that’s probably because I adore creamy cheeses. The tomatoes topping made me jealous because their tomatoes were so much better than the ones I can get on the East coast especially this early in the spring. The mushrooms were good in that way that mushrooms that have been cooked in lots of butter always are.
When I made the bruschetta myself the only disappoint was that the tomato topping was a little flat. Without garden ripened tomatoes its impossible to make a great tomato dish but maybe I’ll try again later in the summer.
The burrata and the tomato bruschetta topping are super simple and easy to prepare. The mushrooms take a little longer but they’re well worth it.
Bruschetta Three Ways (serves 6-8 as an appetizer)
(Active time: 30 minutes Total time: 3 hours 30 minutes)
- 3 ripe plum tomatoes, seeded and diced
- 1/2 tbsp finely minced garlic
- 3 tbsp coarsely chopped fresh basil
- 1 1/2 tbsp finely chopped fresh parsley
- 2 tsp fresh lemon juice
- 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
- one lobe fresh burrata cheese
- 10-12oz mixed mushrooms, diced (I used shiitake and crimini)
- 2 tbsp butter
- 2 scallions
- 1/2 tsp thyme
- 1 baguette, cut in 1/2-inch-thick slices
- 4 cloves garlic, cut in half
For the tomato bruschetta: Mix all the ingredients in a bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste. Set aside, unrefrigerated, 3 hours.
For the burrata bruschetta: Chop the burrata cheese and move to a bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
For the mushroom bruschetta: Heat 2 tablespoons butter in heavy large skillet over medium high heat. Meanwhile heat oven to 450°F. Add the chopped mushroom to the skillet. Cook until slightly browned, stirring occasionally. Add scallions and thyme and cook for until the scallions wilt, about 2 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Remove from heat and spoon mushroom mixture into a bowl. Set aside.
Toast bread on a baking sheet. Checking frequently to prevent burning. Once toasted, remove from the oven and rub cut side of garlic on each slice; serve with with tomato, burrata and mushroom mixtures.