Tomato-Walnut and Cilantro Bruschetta

First appeared in Grainews on 20 September 2022

Based loosely on muhammara, a classic Turkish relish, this spread is spectacular on simple grilled bread as a lunch or an appetizer. It works equally well as a sauce for grilled or roasted fish. In corn season, add a handful of grilled or roasted corn kernels; in pepper season, add diced roasted peppers. Serves 4. From Foodshed: An Edible Alberta Alphabet (TouchWood, 2012.)

assorted tomatoes orange hybrid, green zebra, pineapple, black krim028

1 c.

walnut halves

2 c.

diced ripe tomato

2 T.

pomegranate molasses

1 t.

toasted and ground cumin
Juice and zest of of 1 lemon


garlic cloves, minced

1/4 c.

extra virgin olive oil

1 T.

walnut oil, optional

2 T.

minced cilantro
Kosher salt and hot chili flakes to taste
Crusty sliced bread for the grill
Olive oil for drizzling


Preheat the oven to 350 F. Put the walnuts on a baking sheet in a shallow layer and toast them for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool thoroughly, then chop with a knife. Set aside.

Stir together the tomatoes and pomegranate molasses, then add the cumin, sumac, lemon juice and garlic clove. Add the oils, whisking well. Stir in the cilantro, walnuts, salt and hot chili flakes.

Brush the sliced bread with olive oil. Grill or broil. Remove from heat, garnish with sauce and serve immediately.


“Bread & Water is an emotionally arresting, beautifully written series of essays.”

~ Jurors’ Citation, Saskatchewan Book Awards, University of Saskatchewan President’s Office Nonfiction Award

“Food is a wonderful agent for storytelling... and Bread & Water demonstrates this brilliantly.”

~ Sarah Ramsey, starred review, Quill & Quire

“[Bread & Water is] An amazing feast... riveting... eloquent.”

~ Patricia D. Robertson, Winnipeg Free Press

“[Bread & Water is a] sensuous experience; she brings her poet’s eye and ear to everything within her purview.”

~ Professor emerita Kathleen Wall, Blue Duets

“A deep love of the art of cooking that includes the language of fine dining (cassoulet, confit) even if the lamb was raised in Olds and she picked the rhubarb herself... she impressively manages this collision of worlds with a wholesome, approachable style.”

~ Megan Clark, Alberta Views

“These finely focussed poems [in Wildness Rushing In] invite us into a sensuous and emotionally rich landscape.”

~ Don McKay, winner of the Griffin Poetry Prize

“The writing [in Wildness Rushing In] is honed and textured, the senses so alive that you can practically taste the language. There are moments of brilliance rare in a first book.”

~ Jurors’ Citation, Saskatchewan Book Awards

“dee Hobsbawn-Smith’s stories [in What Can’t Be Undone] are written with a poetic edge. Her descriptions, particularly western landscapes, are often luxurious, lending themselves a kind of nuanced impression, a delicate fingerprint on the reader’s mind. "

~ Lee Kvern, Alberta Views

“[Foodshed is] A rich encyclopedia of facts, farm-gate lore and original recipes... a politically engaging narrative in which Hobsbawn-Smith articulates the challenges and joys faced by small-scale producers... don’ t let the alphabet theme fool you. This is no tame nursery rhyme; it is a locavore call to arms.”

~ P.D. Robertson, The Globe & Mail

Taste Canada Book Awards Finalist
Taste Canada Book Awards Finalist



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