Grilled Bread with Ripe Tomatoes and Olive Oil
- 2 garlic cloves
- Coarse salt, to taste
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 12 slices coarse country bread, each about
3/4 inch thick
- 3 very ripe tomatoes, halved crosswise
- Freshly ground pepper, to taste
For the optional garnishes:
- 1/2 cup green or black brine-cured olives, pitted
- 6 paper-thin slices serrano ham
- 12 paper-thin slices manchego cheese
In a mortar, combine the garlic and salt. Mash together with a pestle to form a paste. Mix in the olive oil.
Place the bread slices on the grill rack 4 to 5 inches from the fire and grill, turning once, until golden brown, 30 to 60 seconds per side. Transfer the bread slices to a platter.
Cupping a tomato half in your palm, rub it over the top sides of 2 pieces of toast, squeezing slightly to leave a smear of pulp, seeds and juice on the surface. Repeat with the remaining tomato halves and bread. Drizzle the olive oil-garlic mixture evenly over the bread slices and sprinkle with pepper. Serve immediately with the garnishes arranged on top, if desired.