Three Delicious Crostinis

Three Delicious Crostinis
Staff Writer

Penny de los Santos

A bruschetta (brew-SKET-ta) is one of many variations of toasted bread, olive oil, and garlic from Italy and it is justly popular all over the world. Meant to be eaten as a dish in itself, today a bruschetta is often served with a topping, though then it’s technically a crostino (literally "little crust"). The traditional Roman way of preparing a bruschetta is to cook the bread in oil to toast it, while the Tuscan fett’unta ("anointed" slice) is toasted first, then drizzled with warmed olive oil, not only a little lighter but less work. And I’ve included a version of Italian-American garlic bread that won’t make you expire from garlic poisoning.

Directions

For the Crostini and the Crostini Caprese

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Lightly brush the slices of baguette with olive oil and toast in the oven until golden brown, about 10 minutes. Rub 1 side of each crostini with the garlic halves immediately when the crostini come out of the oven.

In a medium bowl, mix together the rest of the ingredients and season to taste with salt and pepper. Spoon over the crostini and serve right away, or the crostini will become soggy.

For the Costini di Fegato

In a medium sauté pan, cook the onion and olive oil over medium heat until the onion starts to sizzle. Lower the heat and cook, stirring occasionally until the onion is soft and starting to color a little, about 10-15 minutes. Increase the heat to high and add the chicken livers. Season with salt and pepper to taste, stirring and tossing, until the livers are almost cooked through.

Off heat, add the sherry. Return to the heat and let the wine reduce almost dry as the livers finish cooking. Cool the mixture and pulse it in a food processor until finely chopped but not puréed. Spread on the crostini and sprinkle with the chopped chives.

For Crostini de Gorgonzola con Marmellata di Cipolle

Spread the orange marmalade on each crostini. Sprinkle some gorgonzola cheese on top and finish with a pinch or 2 of the chopped walnuts.