Jun 14, 2011

Recipe for: Tomato, Mozzarella & Basil Crostini

FROM THE KITCHEN OF: Isabel Canfield
TOTAL TIME: less than 10 min MAKES: serves 4 friends

Crostini. What in the world is that? Well, it actually means “little toasts” in Italian. It’s basically a piece of bread that has been toasted or grilled, and dressed with a topping of your choice. For my crostini recipe, I went with an Italian classic. It’s a traditional tomato, mozzarella and basil topping with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper. It’s a little deconstructed where friends will pick up a piece of toasted bread and add the topping themselves, making it a little interactive. I honestly just love the simplicity of this dish because the ingredients speak for themselves. Sometimes you don’t need to do a lot to a dish to make it good. Just choose the freshest ingredients and season them well. Your friends will devour this in minutes. Trust me.

INGREDIENTS:
3 roma tomatoes
handful of basil
1 large ball of mozzarella
salt + pepper to taste
olive oil
balsamic vinegar
1/2 a french baguette

DIRECTIONS:
1. Prepare the toppings for the crostini. Remove the basil leaves from the stem. Slice the mozzarella and tomatoes. When the tomatoes are sliced, drizzle with olive oil and season with salt.

2. Assemble the toppings on a plate. I had a small rectangular plate to assemble the toppings, which was the perfect size. But any plate would do. Alternate a slice of tomato, mozzarella and basil. Repeating until both rows are filled.

3. Season the toppings. At this point, you’ll want to season the topping. Drizzle olive oil over the tomato, mozzarella and basil. Season with salt and pepper. Drizzle with a good balsamic vinegar.

4. Toast slices of french baguette. Slice a french baguette in half-inch rounds. I only used half the baguette. Place the rounds on a baking dish and drizzle with olive oil. I used my broiler in the oven set on low. Place in oven, keeping an eye on it. The broiler will toast it fairly quickly taking only¬† 3-4 minutes. Remove the toasted bread and place in a small serving bowl. Guests will take a toasted bread and eat it with the seasoned tomato, mozzarella and basil. It’s the perfect bite.

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