tomato bruschetta with lemon ricotta

Lindsey Bareham

I don’t like to brag but my tomatoes, grown against the odds in a tiny west London front garden are prolific and taste wonderful. Some went into this simple yet simply delicious toast supper, lovely with folds of prosciutto and a crisp green salad or floppy leaves with diced avocado. Sourdough would be first choice but any bread, even roasted naan or brown walnut bread, gives great results.

serves 4, prep 15 min, cook 5 min

250g ricotta or soft goat cheese
1 lemon
8 basil leaves
2 large ripe tomatoes, approx 600g
4 tbsp olive oil
4-8 thick slices sourdough or other rustic bread
2 garlic cloves

Scoop the ricotta into a mixing bowl. Add the juice from half the lemon. Season lightly with salt, generously with black pepper. Add extra lemon juice to taste. Cut the cores out of the tomatoes in a pointed plug shape. Quarter then scoop the seeds into a sieve over a bowl and press to extract maximum juice. Dice the tomato flesh. Whisk the olive oil into the tomato juice to make a creamy dressing. Chop the basil and stir into the dressing.

Toast the bread, rub one side vigorously with garlic – omit this if you don’t like raw garlic – then spread lavishly with the ricotta. Place on a platter or plates, pile with diced tomato allowing to tumble over the sides. Whisk the dressing and spoon over the top. Cut into manageable pieces. Eat with fingers or knife and fork.