While many love the flavor and color, I like the fact one serving adds up to more than 10 percent of vitamin A, and 25 percent of vitamin C for the day. Vitamin A is essential for our vision, skin, bone formation, and immune function. Vitamin C is an antioxidant to protect body cells from damage, it is also involved with our collagen formation, nervous system, and it helps to enhance iron absorption into our bloodstream. In addition, this recipe contains eight percent of our iron needs, and the allyl sulfur compounds from the garlic and onion may help to protect against stomach and colon cancer, and cardiovascular disease. Tomatoes are also rich in potassium, and lycopene. Potassium is necessary for muscle contraction, and helps to reduce blood pressure. Lycopene, a carotenoid, is a phytochemical (natural plant chemical) that is known to help reduce the risk of prostate cancer. Lycopene is better absorbed when tomatoes are cooked, and this recipe can either be made with raw or cooked tomatoes depending on how you like your bruschetta to be served up. Either way, it’s always a perfect dish to have at your summer gathering, or to bring to your next party.
Tomato Bruschetta Recipe Number of Servings: 10
6 Plum tomatoes, cut small
4 Medium vine ripe tomatoes or garden fresh, cut small
½ Cup red onion, chopped
2 Garlic cloves
½ Cup fresh basil, chopped
2 Ounces balsamic vinegar
1-1/2 Tsp olive oil
¼ Tsp fresh ground black garlic pepper (or regular pepper)
15 Slices of 100% whole grain bread or homemade grain bread
Chop tomatoes. Finely chop onion, garlic, and basil. Mix all ingredients together in a bowl. Mix in balsamic vinegar, olive oil, and pepper – add more for flavor.
Toast bread on one side under broiler, then cut the bread in half. Serve cold bruschetta on top. Serve on a platter or individual plates.
- Spray bread with a light coating of olive oil, rub with garlic, and broil tomato mixture with mozzarella cheese on top. Note this adds calories to the stated amount below.
- Use tortilla chips in place of bread, and use bruschetta topping as a dip in place of salsa.
Calories: 150-170 depending on the size of bread. Average Carbs: 28g, Protein 7g, Fat 4g, Fiber 7g
Vitamin A 10%, Vitamin C 25%, Iron 8% based on percent of daily values for a 2,000 calorie diet.
Kathy LaBella, RDN, CDN, CSSD, ACE-CMES/CPT