Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Crostini with Roasted Root Vegetables

Plated Crostni Version 2



PHOTO TUTORIAL  |  PRINTABLE RECIPE  |  HUNGRY FOR TIPS?

Fear Conquered: Addictions

Yesterday I shared this post as a guest blogger for my friend Mai over on her gorgeous blog, A Cup of Mai - an inspired blog loaded with amazing photos, food and home decor ideas. You may remember I featured Mai and her delicious Orange-Honey Madeleines as a one of my Tuesday Tutor posts. I feel very privileged and honored to be guest posting for Mai's beautiful blog.

Photo Credit: A Cup of Mai

Hi, my name's Javelin Warrior and I have an addiction.

Actually, I'm addicted to two beguiling foods: Bread (my absolute favorite thing to eat) followed very closely by my second favorite food, Cheese.

This is no exaggeration as I would happily eat a slice of warm bread with a smear of melting butter before ever taking a slice of pie (or a piece of chocolate for that matter). And I'll always reach for a home-baked roll at the Thanksgiving table long before I go in search of turkey. In fact, my one true nemesis to ultimate healthfulness is my addiction to bread.

Homemade Crusty Baguettes

An addiction only slightly more powerful than my obsession with cheese.

When I was in high school, I used to buy bags of Kraft cheese cubes, sneak off to my room, and devour the entire bag before dinner. And sadly, despite having matured (aged) a few years, I really haven't done much to curb my obsession. When appetizers are served at parties, I'm instinctively drawn to the platter of sliced cheese - and only the fear of being branded as a glutton keeps me from carrying off the platter to devour in privacy.

Yet bread and cheese are wickedly fattening, especially when paired together - which is of course my favorite way to eat them. But out of respect for health, I generally try to restrain my enthusiasm for these two addictive foods by only consuming in moderation.

And moderation really was the driving force behind this crostini recipe. This is my controlled method of doling out precise quantities of toasted bread and melted cheese - piled high with healthful roasted vegetables to alleviate guilt.

Plated Crostini Along Side Almonds

Quite frankly, these crostini are so good you may be tempted into believing you're gorging on something healthful - except with all that bread and cheese, we both know it's a delusion. In fact, I find it's best to plan EXACTLY how many crostini to make before beginning - otherwise I find myself unintentionally stuck devouring a whole sheet pan of crostini goodness.

Although these crostini would make a lovely appetizer or a tasty side for soup, I rarely eat them as anything but a entree served with perhaps a greens salad. These toasted beauties are a fairly well-rounded meal in and of themselves and if I'm feeling a bit low on protein for the day, I may pair with a small handful of roasted almonds. If one REALLY want to show some love for health, try serving these along side some seasoned black beans or salted edamame. The goodness of the beans just might cancel out all that cheesy, toasted bread badness. Although it’s doubtful.

Before we get to the recipe, I should be upfront about the ingredients. These crostini are ridiculously easy if:
The homemade mayonnaise, crusty baguettes and tangy roasted vegetables are utterly irresistible when topped with melted cheese. So brace yourself and warn your guests - you WILL be rationing these out. Because bread and cheese is addictive, because healthfulness is important and because you love your guests. Hopefully more than you love bread and cheese.



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Photo Tutorial

Baguettes After Final Bake
You will need 1 to 2 baguettes, depending on the number of crostini you plan to make.

Sliced Baguette Ready for Toasting
Thinly slice the baguettes and arrange the slices on a large baking sheet.

Roasted Root Vegetables
Add the roasted root vegetables to a shallow, oven-safe dish.

Roasted Root Vegetables in Oven
Place the baking sheet and vegetable dish in a preheated 475F oven for 3-4 minutes to toast the bread and warm the root vegetables.

Grated Parmesan Cheese
Grate the parmesan and Swiss cheeses.

Toasted Baguette Slices
Remove the toasted bread from the oven and turn over each piece of toast.

Homemade Mayonnaise, with Knife
Spread each piece of toast with homemade mayonnaise.

Crostini Topped with Cheeses
Top each piece of toast with the warmed roasted root vegetables and grated cheeses. Return the sheet of crostini to the oven for 2-3 minutes until the cheese has melted.

Plated Crostni Version 2
Serve immediately.



STORY  |  PHOTO TUTORIAL  |  HUNGRY FOR TIPS?

Crostini with Roasted Root Vegetables

    by Javelin Warrior
     Prep Time: 5 min
     Cook Time: 8 min

Ingredients (makes 16 crostini)
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 475℉
  2. Arrange the baguette slices on a large baking sheet and add the roasted vegetables to a large, shallow, oven-safe baking dish; place the baking sheet and dish in the oven for 3-4 minutes to toast the baguette slices and warm the vegetables
  3. Remove the baking sheet and vegetable dish from the oven; turn over each baguette slice, spread with mayonnaise, top with roasted vegetables and sprinkle with the cheeses
  4. Return the baking sheet with the crostini to the oven and toast for 2-3 minutes until the cheese has melted; serve immediately
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Hungry for Tips?
  • From-scratch: You simply have to make your own mayonnaise for this recipe. The homemade stuff is so much tastier than the bottled, store-bought variety. And these crostini are so simple, the flavor of the mayonnaise is important. If you can swing it, make your own baguettes too. But the mayonnaise you simply must make yourself.
     
  • Do Ahead: You really cannot make crostini in advance - once the cheese hardens and the vegetables cool, these crusty munchies lose their appeal. But you CAN prep everything in advance - slice the baguettes, grate the cheese, measure out the vegetables, etc. Just wait until your guests have arrived before toasting the bread and melting the cheese.
     
  • Proportions: As you can see by the pictures, I usually halve or quarter this recipe as there are generally only two of us eating the final result. As an appetizer, I would plan about three crostini per person. As a side to a soup or other entree, I would probably serve just two crostini.

Huge thanks to Mai for having me as a guest!



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11 comments:

  1. Loved the post, couldn't seem to be able to comment there tho' been having trouble with that lately...yummy recipe!

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    1. Thanks Jenn, I'm so glad you liked it :) Isn't Mai's blog gorgeous?

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  2. Delicious looking crostini-popping over there now for the details!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Tina - I hope you enjoy the post and Mai's lovely blog...

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  3. What nice crostini recipe!! Lovely!

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  4. I'm off to read your post now. It looks delicious! :D

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  5. Absolutely share your obsession about all things bread. Love eating and baking bread. The crostini seems fabulous and with veggies.

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  6. Oh, these look fabulous! As another cheese and bread lover, I love how you sneaked a little healthiness into this treat :) Off to say hi to Mai.

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  7. The idea of a roasted veggies crostini is genius! I love bread, cheese roasted veggies = so it's perfect! Great post!

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  8. Javelin,

    Again, you're amazing! thank you so much for a fabulous guest post!

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