Roasted Tomato Mushroom Bruschetta

It’s Sunday afternoon, and I’m feeling rather antsy as I putter around the house by myself.  My husband went on a bike ride as he has been feeling antsy in his own way as well.  I’m alone, I’m bored, and I’m hungry.  Some of the best (and worst) things have come out of my kitchen when I’m in a mood such as this.  I hate to say it, but being alone tends to contribute as well.  My husband hates fresh tomatoes *gasp, shock outrage* and I adore tomatoes in almost every form.  When I was little, I was famous for eating them green off the plant and not getting sick.

Tonight I decided to try something similar to something I had seen out of the corner of my eye on some random cooking show.  Random, isn’t it?

I decided to make roasted bruschetta.  I first took mushrooms and chopped them somewhere between fine and sliced.  To this, I added sliced tomatoes, and then sliced garlic cloves.  Now the garlic was sliced so that it wouldn’t burn such as smaller pieces would.  I then covered them with salt and pepper and drizzled with olive oil.  I moved them around a bit to make sure they were evenly coated.

My oven has this lovely convection roasting setting, so I popped that on and cooked them at 10 minute intervals, as I was unsure of timing.  Ended up being about 35 minutes in the oven. Everything came out looking scrumptious, now I just needed some bread!

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I had some leftover dinner rolls from a previous post- I sliced them in half and treated them with a recent purchase from a vineyard store in San Diego: Garlic Olive oil.  IMG_0208

This is very much one of my favorite cooking oils.  I brushed this over the bread and broiled it for about 2 minutes (watch this carefully two minutes is near burnt (I like mine crunchy).  Towards the end, I sprinkled each slice with about ½ teaspoon shredded parmesan because, seriously, you gotta have cheese.

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While I was doing this, the tomatoes had a chance to cool.  I them dumped them on my über chopping board and sliced them into chunks.  I then poured this into a serving bowl along with the drippings from the bowl- (garlic essence anyone?) I then went to my garden and grabbed some herbs I thought would add some good flavor.  I favor Italian Parsley for things such as this, and for some reason, I grabbed a stalk from my lemon grass.

Both were chopped and mixed with the tomato mixture.  Bread came out of the oven and I arranged the slices on a platter around the tomato mixture after they had a chance to cool.  I ended up eating this with a modified Shirley Temple (meaning there was a tiny bit of Whipped Cream Vodka in it) and my husband found me by following the moans as I was eating in my office when he got home.

So scrumdiddlyumptious!

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Homemade rolls

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Bread.  Need I say more?  I’ve had people ask me if a piece of garlic bread was worth the carbs (whilst I was eating said piece) and I was rather shocked that they even had to ask.  I know many are trying to lose weight and I am too.  However, I don’t believe in making myself miserable.  As far as I am aware, I’ve got one chance on this planet.  I am relatively happy with the way I look- and even though I could stand to lose a few pounds- I’ve decided to do that with exercise and eating healthy instead of starving myself and eating nasty tasting diet food.  I’m not sprinkling powder on my food or even using wraps to punish my stomach muscles.  I do portion control, and I don’t think one must remove the items one enjoys from a menu to lose weight.

Now, a good destroyer of diet plans everywhere, bread.  A good rule of thumb in eating health is to avoid white food. White bread, white pasta, white rice- all have starch which can help pack on the inches and make you feel a little bloated.  Eat wheat and whole grain foods- you gain your healthy servings of grain and satisfy that wonderful craving for a hot slice.

Ironically, my go-to recipe is for making white bread.  However, I tend to alter it quite a bit.  I got the original recipe from my Mum, and I believe hers came from a bread machine book.  I use my bread machine quite a bit and this recipe is designed for the lovely machine.  As in all bread machine recipes, you put the liquids in first.

White Bread

1 cup + 2 Tablespoons water (make sure it is warm (but not scorching) so as to activate the yeast)

1 Tablespoon Oil

2 Tablespoons Sugar

1 Tablespoon Milk Powder

1 teaspoon salt

3 cups flour ( Here is where I substitute wheat flour a lot- just substitute up to half, but not over of the 3 cups or it gets really dense and sometimes doesn’t rise as well).  I have substituted all of the flour for wheat before and ended up with a Frisbee.

2 teaspoons yeast

Put wet, then dry ingredients in bread machine.  Set on the dough setting, and let the machine do its thing.  I use this recipe for a couple of things.

If I am doing a loaf, I take a loaf pan, rub the insides with Crisco, and then dust with flour.  This makes an amazing crust when you go to bake it.

After the dough is ready, dump out onto a floured chopping board and knead slightly.  Shape and put in your prepared loaf pan and let rise until it is the size you desire.  I usually do ½ to 1 hour as needed.

Bake for 30 minutes at 375 F.

Rolls

Use the above recipe, but when you dump onto the floured board, cut pieces off the dough and start rolling.  I use my pizza stone to get lovely browned rolls.  Bake for roughly the same amount of time, but keep an eye on it so that it doesn’t overbrown.

My last batch of rolls is below, although I included my Mum’s homemade strawberry jam for color (I have had several people tell me her jam could be used as another form of currency).

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