Monday, June 11, 2012

Garlic and Herb Cheese Crostini with Summer Tomato Sauce

Perfect Pairing:  Cooking spray

If you go to my recipes link you will notice that the area with the most recipes is the appetizer section.  I don’t know if this is because usually I make multiple appetizers at once for a party, or if I just really like appetizers. 
Today I am adding another great recipe to that section.  I can’t say enough good things about this tasty little canap√©.  I love the Summer Tomato Sauce I wrote about last September and wanted to re-purpose it for use in an appetizer.  It is so good on this cheesy crostini.  The bread is toasty, the cheese is creamy, and the sauce is sweet and full of summer flavors.  It is a cinch to make and will be a hit at any party.  I served it up before Easter dinner and the platter was empty in minutes.
The Perfect Pairing for this recipe is good old cooking spray.  I used to brush my bread slices with olive oil to crisp them up but a coating of cooking spray will do the same thing, and it is a lot easier.

Garlic and Herb Cheese Crostini with Summer Tomato Sauce
Lindsay at Perfecting the Pairing

·         2 Tb olive oil
·         5 garlic cloves, smashed
·         3 pints of grape tomatoes, halved
·         10 leaves of fresh basil, thinly sliced
·         4 oz garlic and herb cheese (like Boursin), softened
·         4 oz ricotta cheese, softened
·         Salt and pepper, to taste
·         1 baguette or loaf of French bread, thinly sliced
·         Cooking spray
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.  Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook in the oil until soft and lightly browned.  Add the sliced tomatoes and cook over medium-low heat until the tomatoes have broken down and reached a sauce consistency.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Remove from heat and stir in the fresh basil.  Remove the whole garlic cloves.  Set aside until ready to use.
In a small bowl, mix the garlic and herb cheese and the ricotta.  Stir until combined.  Season with salt and pepper, to taste. 
Lay the sliced bread on a baking sheet in a single layer.  Spray with cooking spray until each piece has a coating.  Toast bread in the oven until just golden and crispy.
To serve, spread the ricotta mixture on the sliced bread and top with the tomato basil sauce.

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