Black Ash & Pear Crostini …

Black Ash & Pear Crostini with Red Wine Glaze.

When needing to whip up a quick appetizer for a party recently, I recalled an easy recipe from my book, Artisan Vegan Cheese, for Gruyere and Pear Croustade with Red Wine Glaze. Simply perfect!

It struck me that our Limited Edition Mt. Vesuvius Black Ash could step in beautifully as a substitute for the homemade “Gruyere.”  Its black exterior with a slice of buttery pear and glossy red glaze would not only be a visual show-stopper, but hit the palate with a perfect harmony of flavors – tangy, sweet, savory, earthy. And yet it would be oh-so-simple to put together! I could taste the flavors even before I began slicing bread for the crostini.

This elegant hor d’ouervres is easily assembled by topping a thin slice of baguette with a slice each of our Mt. Vesuvius Black Ash and fresh pear, baking it for about 10 minutes until hot, then drizzling it with an easy red wine glaze. It might not stop the show, but it will stop your guests in their tracts as they “ooh” and “aah” as they reach for one … and then another.

Serves 8 (2 per person)

  • ½ baguette, cut into ¼” slices (about 16 slices)
  • ½ round Miyoko’s Creamery Mt. Vesuvius Black Ash, sliced ¼ inch thick (about 16 slices)
  • 1 firm but ripe pear, cut into 1/3 inch slices (about 16 slices)

Red Wine Glaze (from Artisan Vegan Cheese, BOOK PUBLISHING COMPANY, 2012):

  • 1 ½ cups dry red wine
  • 3 tablespoons sugar or agave nectar
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons arrowroot

First, make the glaze. Combine the wine, sugar, thyme, and salt in a medium saucepan and bring to a simmer. Simmer to reduce to about ½ cup, about 20 minutes. Dissolve the arrowroot in the tablespoon of water, and stir into the wine mixture, and heat briefly until shiny, glossy, and lightly thickens. Set aside while baking the crostini.

Preheat the oven to 350℉.  Assemble the crostini by placing a slice of Mt. Vesuvius Black Ash on top of a slice of baguette, then topping with a slice of pear. Bake for about 8 to 10 minutes until hot. Drizzle each one with a teaspoon of the glaze, and serve immediately.

Our Limited Edition Mt. Vesuvius Black Ash is currently available (as of 12/5/14) in our Miyoko’s Merry Mix Holiday Collection. Shipping 12/15/14.



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