Recipe: pa amb tomàquet (tomato bread)

Tomato bread recipe Catalan Spain

One of my favourite Catalan dishes is really simple, it’s just bread, tomato, olive oil, garlic and salt.  There’s hardly any cooking involved and is perfect alongside a beer, but with wine and well anything!

It can be served as a snack on its own, as a starter or beside a salad for a light dinner. It takes minutes to make yet is delicious.

Tomato bread recipe Catalan Spain Buy some tasty tomatoes and use good olive oil.  Don’t skimp here as you will taste it.  You don’t need to use fresh bread (I think traditionally this would have been a way to use yesterday’s bread – don’t quote me on that tho!) as you will be grilling the bread.

Start with grating your tomatoes. Cut a tomato in half and rub over the grater. Keep the palm of your hand completely flat (unless you fancy some knuckle in there!).  Using the grater  mashes up the pulp of the tomato and keeps the chewy skin away.   I grated the tomatoes into a bowl for ease of spooning onto the bread later.

Tomato bread recipe Catalan Spain

I had a baguette to hand so used this, however any loaf will do, ciabatta is a tasty option. Slice the bread and drizzle with olive oil. Then place under the grill until crisp.  This crispness holds the tomato in place.

Next, take a  clove of garlic, split it in half and rub over the crisped bread.

Tomato bread recipe Catalan Spain

Spoon the tomato pulp onto each slice of bread.  You don’t need much to top each slice as it will soak into the bread. Add a drizzle of olive oil and season with salt.  That’s all you need.  You can add other toppings, anchovies are especially tasty on top.

Recipe: pa amb tomàquet (tomato bread)


  • 2 large ripe beef tomatoes
  • 1 loaf of bread such as ciabatta or baguette.
  • Olive oil
  • 2 medium cloves garlic split in half
  • Flaky sea salt


  • Split tomatoes in half horizontally.
  • Place a box grater into a bowl.
  • Rub the cut faces of the tomatoes over the large holes of the box grater.
  • Discard the skin.
  • Drizzle bread with olive oil.
  • Grill until bread is crisp.
  • Remove bread from grill.
  • Rub bread with the split garlic cloves.
  • Spoon tomato mixture over bread.
  • Drizzle with more olive oil and season with salt.
  • Eat!

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I am Emma and with my husband Mark write Foodie Explorers, which is a food and travel website.

I am a member of the Guild of Food Writers and British Guild of Travel Writers.

We have a wide range of judging experience covering products, hotels and have judged, for example, for Great Taste Awards and Scottish Baker of the Year.

Along the way Mark gained WSET Level 2 in Wine and I have WSET Level 2 in Spirits as well as picking up an award with The Scotsman Food and Drink Awards.    

Usually I can be found sleeping beside a cat.

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