Anything on a raft? Ok guys, a raft supports your lovely bod on the water…right?
Of course we won’t be floating appetizers on water, but we will be using crostini, sliced baked potatoes, and chips to support delicious toppings. This is a great appetizer because it comes with so much variety. Set each bit out already made, or allow your guests to create their own. This is simple and creative so jump in and have fun!
Lets toast it, bake it and chip it. You may just like it too much!
Serves 8-10 *
- 1 sheet pan with rack *
- Chef knife
- Serrated knife (for cutting bread)
- Small sauce pan
- Pastry brush
- Measuring spoons and cups
- 1 French baguette, cut into 1/4″ slices (crostini) *
- 1 stick of butter, or 4 oz.
- 1 t. + to taste Mom’s Gourmet – Rowdy Kitty Rub *
- 3 C. Roma tomatoes, concasse *
- 2 T. garlic, minced
- 1/3 C. Parmesan cheese, grated
- 1/2 C. basil, chiffonade (french word for thinly sliced)
- 1/4 C. extra virgin olive oil
- 2 T. balsamic vinegar, preferably white
- 1/2-1 t. salt
- black pepper to taste
- assorted quick toppings, optional *
Chef Gerrie’s Notes:
* Servings: The rule of thumb for appetizers are 3-4 pieces per person, so do the math before shopping Einsteins!
* Sheet pan with rack: The rack keeps the air flowing around the bread slices so you end up with perfect crostini on each side.
* Crostini: These toasted and seasoned french bread slices can be found in the bakery area of your grocery store if you don’t want to slice your own. If you do however, crostini can be made a day or two ahead and stored in an air tight container or zip lock bag. Be sure the bread is dry before storing so you don’t get soggy rafts.
Bread is not the only option here. All you need is a raft to transport your toppings to your mouth. A raft could be a cracker, any type of chip – although make sure it’s strong enough to hold your topper, a homemade baked potato slice, or raw veggie.
* Mom’s Gourmet: These are great seasonings! Look for them at specialty grocery stores or the Mom’s Gourmet website.
* Tomato concasse: Concasse is a French word that means the tomato is cored, peeled (by quickly blanching), and then diced to 1/4″ thickness.
* Assorted toppings: You can find a variety of toppings already made in the grocery store for a quick and easy app. For example, olive tapenade, artichoke cream, hummus, baba ganoush, bean salsas, roasted red peppers, cheese, etc.
- Preheat oven to 375° F.
- Melt butter and season with Mom’s Gourmet. Then brush melted butter on both sides of bread slices and toast in the oven for 5 minutes, or until golden. Flip and toast again for 5 minutes. Cool on rack until completely cool and dry.
- Combine all remaining ingredients and let marinate for at least 15-20 minutes or overnight.
- Assemble bruschettas by topping each crostini (or whatever raft you choose) with the marinated tomato mix, or whatever else you’ve decided to serve. Arrange on a platter and serve.