Recipe: Blistered Tomato Toasts

Recipe: Blistered Tomato Toasts

(Image credit: Karla Conrad)

With a simple breakfast toast like this one, you want to use the best ingredients available to you. Get a really good bread, brush it with really good olive oil, buy some bright ripe tomatoes, and use nice anchovies packed in olive oil. Every bite will be worth it.

(Image credit: Karla Conrad)

This savory breakfast toast, with its mellow sweet roasted tomatoes and briny anchovies, could really be a meal for any time of day. But if you wake up one morning in need of something delicious and easy, this meal is for you. Don't be put off by the anchovies; they melt alongside the tomatoes as they roast, and become the salty, creamy undercurrent that contrasts the acidic sweetness of the tomatoes.

While the anchovies and tomatoes are the big flavor players in this recipe, it's the olive oil that plays the loudest horn. In my mind, and in my kitchen, there are two camps of olive oil: the first is the hard working, all-purpose, basic olive oil that helps sauté my veggies, gets brushed on meat before the grill, and acts as the base for marinades; the other is a more delicate, flavorful, higher-quality olive oil. That oil is reserved for dressing greens, dipping bread in, and liberally drizzling over finished soups. And now, it's used to make this toast.

Blistered Tomato Toasts

Serves 4

4 (1-inch-thick) slices good bread, such as country loaf or whole-grain
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing on bread
Salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 pint of cherry, Campari, grape, or cocktail tomatoes
3 anchovy fillets, coarsely chopped, or 1 tablespoon anchovy paste
1 clove garlic, minced

Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat to 425°F.

Place the bread on a baking sheet. Liberally brush each slice with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Bake until the bread is starting to turn golden-brown in spots, 5 to 8 minutes. Transfer the bread to a platter or cutting board.

Place the tomatoes, 2 tablespoons olive oil, anchovy, and garlic in a medium bowl. Toss very well, massaging all the ingredients together with your hands. Season with salt.

Transfer the mixture to the baking sheet or a cast iron skillet. Roast in the oven until the tomatoes are very soft and wilted, shaking the pan occasionally, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and let cool slightly.

Using a spoon, scoop equal amounts of the roasted tomatoes onto each slice of bread. Using the back of the spoon, gently smear the tomatoes into the bread. (Optional: Drizzle a little more olive oil and sprinkle some flaky sea salt on the toasts.)

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