Appetizers, Breakfast, Snacks

Bruschetta with arugula pesto – Donna Hay Challenge

February 24, 2012

Here comes another Donna Hay Challenge. And this time I was thinking.
I didn’t focus on changing position of a napkin (but I know I should), or trying to make perfect slices of mozzarella. I even didn’t make my own pesto (shhh…, don’t tell anybody) and all because of Joanne. She wrote  “How many more pictures of mismatched cutlery and milk bottles do we really need to see?” and I can’t stop thinking about this sentence. I love milk bottles’ photos, they are so cute, make me feel like I was somewhere nice and cosy. I would die to make delicious photos like that, but what about my own style? Do I really want to make photos like a lot of different people?
I love Donna Hay Challenges. I was just going through my photos and thinking how different they are and how proud of them I am. They are better than my usual photos. I spend more time working on them. Simone is great, she always chooses something different. But still, everytime it is up to you what will you learn this time.

Bruschetta with arugula pesto - Donna Hay recipe

So yes, instead of repositioning the napkin, moving a table to get different light. I was just thinking about milk bottles! I know my weakness. I know that I don’t like this colour of wood in a photo but love the colours in the original one. I don’t like props just put to be there, like I did here. Small bottle of water? And a tiny jar. OK, I know it should be a glass, but still I wouldn’t put it this way myself, I prefer when you can actually believe that someone will be eating the food any time. But what is my style?
I haven’t got an answer and probably won’t find it soon either. But I like this itchy feeling that unanswered question gives me.

It is a really delicious bruschetta and really easy to make, perfect for a breakfast or lunch.

The original challenge photo you can see at the Simone’s blog and it was taken by Con Poulos.

Bruschetta with arugula pesto - Donna Hay recipe

Bruschetta with arugula pesto 

  • 8 slices bread
  • 1 clove garlic (halved)
  • extra virgin olive oil (for sprinkling)
  • 3-4 pieces bocconcini (in small slices or you can use regular mozarella)
  • 8 slices prosciutto
  • black pepper (coarsely ground)

For arugula pesto 

  • 1 handful basil
  • 2 handfuls arugula (rocket)
  • 1 handful basil
  • 40 g pine nuts (roasted)
  • 20 g grated parmesan
  • 1/4 garlic clove
  • 60 ml extra virgin olive oil
I used store-bought pesto I brought from my trip to Italy, but I made pesto before and it’s really worth trying. Because I don’t have a griddle pan I toasted bread in an oven. Next time I would put mozzarella and let it melt under a grill as I prefer it melted :)

For making the arugula pesto put arugula, basil, pine nuts, parmesan and garlic into a food processor and puree roughly.
>While the motor is running add the olive oil and mix until it is a thick, rough substance.
Don’t make it too fine. Chunks are ok to have.
Heat a griddle pan and bake both sides of the bread golden brown and crispy.
Rub this with half a clove of garlic and sprinkle with some olive oil.
Put some of the slices of mozarella on the toast and liberally cover with the pesto.
Top this with a slice of prosciutto and finish with some salt and pepper.

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  • Reply Joanne February 24, 2012 at 08:27

    I admire the effort you put into your Donna Hay challenges and the results are always impressive. By trying to photograph like Donna Hay, you are developing skills that will eventually become your own style. So pay no attention to me! And use milk bottles if you like them!!

    • Reply Magda February 24, 2012 at 08:59

      Joanne, but you are right. Nobody needs another photo of milk bottles. Yeah sure if it is a training to check if I can take that kind of photo than right, but there is no use of trying incorporate them to my style just because I like them. There are so many more options to check.
      And believe me, if I ever need to put a milk bottle in my photo I will do it :)

  • Reply Ania February 24, 2012 at 12:01

    Hi Magda, I really enjoy reading your blog. I’m also a Polish expat and am now living in Canada’s maritimes. One of the foods that I miss most from home is ice cream!! Especially wisniowe lody!mmmmmm! Or even a simple vanilla cone, it’s just not the same quality here. You wouldn’t happen to have a vintage Polish receipe on hand by any chance? lol

  • Reply Simply Tia February 24, 2012 at 13:38

    This looks really delicious!

    • Reply Magda February 24, 2012 at 16:41

      Thank you Tia

  • Reply Cornelia February 24, 2012 at 16:50

    Your pictures are to die for, amazing!:)

    • Reply Magda February 26, 2012 at 20:29

      Thank you Cornelia, I’m glad you liked it

  • Reply Colette February 24, 2012 at 19:44

    Really tasty recipe, and your pictures are brilliant, when you look at the original. Well done :)

    • Reply Magda February 26, 2012 at 20:31

      Thank you Colette, I would still prefer to have dark table and chairs and napkin folding classes would be useful too ;)

  • Reply Judit @WineDineDaily February 26, 2012 at 20:07

    Thank you Magda for this delicious and quick recipe! Love the beautiful photos.
    Cheers :)
    J & C

    • Reply Magda February 26, 2012 at 20:36

      Thank you Judit. That’s why I like Italian cuisine, it’s simple and delicious.

  • Reply Junglefrog February 26, 2012 at 22:47

    So happy that you could participate again this month Magda! I think in the end, everyone that has taken part in the challenge has learned something and ultimately that is what counts (and I love the milk bottle thing too..:)) I love your take on the photo and you shouldn’t have mentioned that you didn’t make the pesto yourself as no one would have noticed! lol!

    • Reply Magda February 26, 2012 at 23:17

      Thank you Simone. I’m happy to participate too. And I’m sure you would have noticed the different colour of pesto. Yours is crazy green and sometimes is good to know that you can cheat on a recipe :)

  • Reply Jenn February 27, 2012 at 07:46

    I don’t like the color of my dining table either but I LOVE how warm and rich your cutting board is!! Beautiful photos!

    • Reply Magda February 27, 2012 at 08:52

      Thank you Jenn. I love the colour and shape of my cutting board.

  • Reply Nicole February 27, 2012 at 22:50

    I think you did a great job of capturing the light and creating a nice moody setting. Nice job.

  • Reply Gosia February 28, 2012 at 04:08

    I love to follow this thread… part of me in awe of your skill, part of me envious of it (begging your forgiveness). You did splendidly, in my humble opinion. Don’t you suspect that the original is a ‘panty-hose’ image? I’m so tempted to test it now myself. Fantastic work, Magda. Hugs.

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