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Crostini with Balsamic Strawberries and Ricotta

These crostini with balsamic strawberries and ricotta are sweet, tart, creamy and perhaps the prettiest appetizers you can serve at your next fancy picnic, Mother’s Day brunch or bridal shower. They also take less than 20 minutes to prepare!
I served these beautiful treats with prosciutto and chive cream cheese crostini at my last brunch party and at first, I could tell my guests were a little unsure about them.

At first glance, people may not expect an appetizer that combines a fruit with a cheese, bread and balsamic vinegar to be particularly tasty. But when one guest gave it a try, his eyes lit up, and he said “That’s incredible!” they all disappeared in an instant.

Does balsamic vinegar really go with strawberries?

It sure does! A strawberry’s most forward flavors are sweet, a little citrusy, and flowery. Balsamic vinegar is also sweet, but has a tangy flavor that “fills in the blanks,” so to speak, of strawberry, the way that salt complements pepper, or sweet complements sour. The flavors round each other out nicely.

Can I make any substitutions?

I’d say the strawberries, baguette, balsamic vinegar and brown sugar are all a must, but if you want this crostini to be more dessert-like, you can substitute mascarpone for the ricotta.


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1 baguette, sliced into 1/2-inch pieces
1 cup ricotta cheese
1 pint (2 cups) fresh strawberries, hulled and sliced
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon honey
Fresh mint leaves, chopped (for garnish)
Olive oil, for brushing
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste


Prepare the Strawberries:

In a mixing bowl, combine the sliced strawberries, balsamic vinegar, honey, a pinch of salt, and black pepper.
Toss gently to coat the strawberries evenly and set aside to marinate for at least 10 minutes.

Prepare the Crostini:

Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C).
Arrange the baguette slices on a baking sheet and brush both sides lightly with olive oil.
Bake in the preheated oven for about 10 minutes, flipping halfway through, until the crostini are golden and crispy.
Remove from the oven and let cool slightly.

Assemble the Crostini:

Spread a generous amount of ricotta cheese onto each crostini.
Top with a spoonful of the balsamic strawberries.
Garnish with chopped fresh mint leaves for an added burst of flavor and color.

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