Fettunta (Toasted bread with olive oil)
- Preparation time: 10 minutes.
- Cooking time: 10 minutes.
- Extra-virgin olive oil.
- Black pepper.
This dish is generally associated with the month of november, when the olives have been gathered and the oil is newly pressed. Obviously it is eaten all year round, but in other seasons in lacks that characteristic pungent flavour of the new oil. Cut the bread about a centimetre thick, grill well on both sides and rub one side generously with a clove of garlic. You just have to forget the unpleasant effect on your breath, if you are going to enjoy this properly: semel in anno licet insanire, as Dante once said, "everyone can go mad at least once a year".
Place the slices on a large serving platter and drizzle the oil over them. Season with salt and pepper and eat while still hot. In the summer you can top the crostini with chopped tomatoes, or tomato sauce. In winter, fettunta is the basis of a traditional soup known, somewhat inexplicably, as "Lombard soup": place the slice of bread in a soup bowl and cover with boiled cannellini beans, adding a little of the thick liquid in which they were cooked. Season with oil, salt and pepper.