Portions: Makes 8 servings
Lots of restaurants serve bruschette now, but we know that details count. By the way, here’s a short Italian lesson: A single slice of toast with topping is a bruschetta. The plural is bruschette.
To make the topping, soak the onion in a small bowl with cold water to cover for 30 minutes. Drain well and pat dry. Whisk the vinegar and oregano in a large bowl. Gradually whisk in the olive oil. Add the tomatoes, drained onion, olives, and ¹⁄4 cup of the ricotta salata and mix. Season with salt and pepper. Let stand at room temperature for 1 to 2 hours for the flavors to blend. Just before serving, preheat an outdoor grill (preferably charcoal) or broiler on high. Toast the bread, turning once, until golden, about 3 minutes. Rub each toasted bread slice with a garlic half. (You don’t have to use all of the garlic). Place the bread on a serving platter. Drizzle olive oil over the toasts. Heap equal amounts of the tomato topping, with some of its juices, over each bruschetta. Sprinkle with the remaining ¹⁄4 cup of ricotta salata and the basil leaves. Serve at once. The cold water soak reduces the strong onion flavor. Use this tip for any salad where you want the onion to play nice with the other ingredients.