Have you ever experienced this: You have made the perfect bowl of pasta with your favourite sauce and fresh ingredients. You can smell the delicious aroma of cheese, garlic and herbs wafting from the bowl. But you feel like something is missing - not in the dish, but alongside it. Your meal needs a nice appetiser. A classic choice would be toasted garlic bread, either plain or with some cheese on top. But perhaps you want something else this time - so how about a starter that will bring new flavours and complement your lovely pasta? The next time you want a quick starter or just a new snack, you should try making pav bruschetta. Here's what you need to know about this yummy dish:
(Also Watch: The Secret To Making Restaurant-Style Creamy Cheesy Pasta)
What Is Pav Bruschetta?
You may have heard of Bruschetta, an Italian appetiser typically made by topping round bread slices with diced tomatoes, cheese, basil, olive oil, onions, and more. Restaurants and cafes generally use French bread (baguette) or a similar bread that has a slightly hard crust. They then simply add toppings of their choice onto the bread. Bruschetta is childishly simple to make, but not all of us have baguettes lying around - especially at the last minute. So what do you use in place of French bread? The answer is simple: pav! Although pav has a different texture than a baguette, it tends to be light and unflavoured. It also absorbs butter, olive oil and dressings well. Another unique feature of this bruschetta is that it doesn't require tomatoes. If you're someone who likes the flavour of tomato but hates eating raw pieces of it, this recipe is perfect for you.
(Also Read: 7 Indian Gravy Recipes That Don't Require Tomatoes At All)
Easy Recipe for Pav Bruschetta - A Yummy Last-Minute Appetiser
What you need:
This Pav Bruschetta recipe can be customised according to your needs. The vegetarian version requires finely diced paneer while the non-vegetarian version uses finely diced chicken salami/ shredded chicken. Apart from the bread, you will need fresh basil, green capsicum, olives (optional), cheese, any tomato-based dip or sauce (like pasta sauce or ketchup) and seasonings like oregano, chilli flakes, rosemary, etc.
How to make Pav Bruschetta:
- You have to first cut the pav/bread into medium-sized slices and toast it in garlic butter in a pan. This will make the edges crisper and allow the pav to hold the toppings later on.
- Spread a layer of pasta sauce / any tomato-based dip on the bread slices as prepared above.
- In a bowl, mix chopped capsicum, olives, paneer/chicken, olive oil, seasonings, salt, and pepper.
- Spoon a small amount of the mixture onto the slices. Do not make a heap, as more ingredients are yet to be added.
- Add shredded cheese and then the chopped basil
- Drizzle with balsamic vinegar glaze, or simply sprinkle more herb seasoning on top. Serve immediately.
Click here for the full recipe and ingredient quantities for Pav Bruschetta
Tips To Remember When Making Pav Bruschetta
- If you have neither pav nor a baguette, use slices of small, unsweetened buns.
- If you don't have garlic butter, simply saute garlic cloves in butter and toast the bread in it. Either way, ensure that the bread has hardened slightly on both sides, or it will not stay intact once toppings are added.
- Use ketchup as a spread only as a last resort. If you have any leftover/ readymade pasta sauce that is tomato-based, apply that to the bread. If you are using ketchup, you first need to balance its sweetness. In a separate bowl, mix 2 tbsp ketchup, 1 tsp olive oil, 1 tsp paprika and 1 tsp oregano to form your own spread.
- Avoid overloading the pav. Finely chop all the ingredients so that the toppings are not too heavy for the bread slices.
(Also Read: 7 Delicious Snack Options Made With Leftover Bread)
Pav Bruschetta leaves you with a burst of flavour and freshness in your mouth. It is the perfect appetiser, especially when you don't have much time to cook. Make it soon and let us know how you like it!
About Toshita SahniToshita is fuelled by wordplay, wanderlust, wonderment and Alliteration. When she is not blissfully contemplating her next meal, she enjoys reading novels and roaming around the city.