Fire up the grill for Florentine-inspired appetizers featuring slices of rustic bread and bright, fresh veggies. Dress the garden-fresh produce with tangy pesto-spiked vinaigrette to lock in summertime flavor.
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 6 tablespoons BUITONI Refrigerated All Natural Pesto with Basil
- 6 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
- Salt and ground black pepper
- 1 1/2 pounds tomatoes, cored, seeded and cut into 1-inch pieces
- 1 loaf (1 pound) rustic Italian, whole-wheat or French bread (10 to 12 inches long), sliced into 1-inch pieces, cut in half
- 2 large bell peppers, any color, quartered
- 1 medium zucchini, halved lengthwise
- 1/2 English cucumber, peeled, halved lengthwise, sliced thin
- 1 shallot, sliced thin
- 1/4 cup shredded fresh basil, plus more for garnish
WHISK together ¼ cup oil, pesto, vinegar and garlic in small bowl; season with salt and pepper.
GENTLY toss tomatoes with 1/2 teaspoon salt in a large bowl. Transfer to colander and set over bowl or in sink; set aside to drain for 15 minutes, tossing occasionally (this will allow water to drain out).
HEAT grill to medium-high. Brush bread pieces on both sides with some remaining oil (you will need about 2 to 3 tablespoons); sprinkle with a little salt. Grill for about 30 seconds on each side or until nicely browned. Set aside.
BRUSH peppers and zucchini with a little remaining oil (about 1 tablespoon will be needed); grill on each side for about 4 minutes. Cool; cut into bite-size pieces.
ADD tomatoes, cucumber, shallot and basil to large bowl. Add grilled vegetables and vinaigrette; toss to coat. For appetizers, spoon a few tablespoons vegetable mixture over each bread slice and serve bruschetta-style. For a light entrée, serve two bread slices with about 1 cup of the vegetable mixture. Garnish with additional shredded basil, if desired.