Called fettunta in Tuscany, the southern Italian bruschetta is grilled bread that has been rubbed with garlic and anointed with great olive oil. This version is a great pass-around before a dinner party, and a great first course.
4 large red bell peppers
1 garlic clove, pounded into a paste with 1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
6 ounces crumbly Gorgonzola
brimming cup of Mascarpone
12 slices of bruschetta
12 Kalamata olives, pitted and sliced
2 tablespoons finely snipped fresh chives
1. Place the peppers over a very hot open flame (you can use the jets of a gas range or, even better, an open charcoal fire). Turn the peppers every two minutes or so until they are completely blackened on the outside (this should take 6 to 10 minutes). Immediately place the charred peppers in a paper bag. Let them sit for 20 minutes.
2. After 20 minutes, remove the peppers from the bag, and, working with your fingers, peel off the blackened skin. (Do not at any point wash off the blackened skin; water spoils the texture of the peppers.) Cut off the tops of the peppers, and reserve for another use. Cut each pepper open on the side, and remove all seeds and all tough membranes clinging to the walls. Cut each pepper into 3 equal fillets along the natural separations. In a bowl mix the pepper fillets well with 1/4 teaspoon of the garlic paste and with the olive oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Let stand for at least 15 minutes and up to 1 hour.
3. In a small bowl mix together the Gorgonzola and the Mascarpone. Blend well.
4. Spread one side of each bruschetta with the Gorgonzola mixture. Divide the sliced olives among the 12 bruschette, placing them evenly over the cheese mixture. Top each bruschetta with a fillet of red pepper, grilled side up. Top each bruschetta with 1/2 teaspoon of chives. Serve immediately.
Called fettunta in Tuscany, the southern Italian bruschetta is grilled bread that has been rubbed with garlic and anointed with great olive oil. This version is a great pass-around before a dinner party, and a great first course. Makes 12