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Crostini with California Pistachios

Crostini with California PistachiosThis is an easy but elegant appetizer with a choice of two delicious toppings - Mediterranean or Savory Cheese.

Recipe Ingredients:

1 loaf sweet French bread* (baguette size)
1/2 cup natural California pistachios, chopped
1 tablespoon freshly minced parsley

Mediterranean Topping:
1 cup bottled roasted red peppers, drained; or diced canned pimientos
4 ounces (1 cup) Parmesan cheese, freshly sliced thin and crumbled
1 to 2 tablespoons garlic, minced
1 tablespoon dried rosemary, crumbled
1/4 cup olive oil

Savory Cheese Topping:
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
8 ounces goat cheese
1 to 2 tablespoons garlic, minced
1 teaspoon each dried basil and thyme

Cooking Directions:

  1. Cut loaf in half, then split lengthwise. Spoon desired topping along length of bread, then sprinkle pistachios in diagonal strips across bread.
  2. Place prepared loaves in shallow baking pan and cover loosely with foil.
  3. Bake in a preheated oven at 400°F (205°C). for 20 minutes or until heated through; sprinkle with parsley and cut crosswise into narrow strips.
  4. For Mediterranean Topping: Chop peppers; mix with remaining ingredients.
  5. For Savory Cheese Topping: Combine all ingredients and beat well.

Makes approximately 20 slices, depending on size of loaf.

*To use sourdough baguettes, hollow out some of the soft bread center, leaving a 1/2-inch shell.

Recipe and photograph provided courtesy of the California Pistachio Commission.