Crostini de Peperoni

Crostini de Peperoni

(Roast Peppers and Goat Cheese on Crostini)
The Beat Divas — Mady Kaye
Yield: 3 cups roast peppers. Makes about 24 crostini

3 large bell peppers: one each of red, yellow, orange

3 large cloves garlic, minced fine
9 – 10 TBSP. olive oil
½ cup firmly packed, finely chopped fresh basil
salt and pepper to taste
½ lb. fresh goat cheese, at room temperature before assembly

For the crostini:
1 loaf white Italian or French bread, about 24” long, 3” diameter (makes 24 to 30 slices)
1/3 cup olive oil
¼ cup unsalted butter (4 TBSP.)
3 to 4 large cloves garlic, minced

1. Grill peppers on your gas flame, sitting peppers directly on the burner. Each pepper takes about 10 minutes to grill. Use tongs to turn peppers as you cook them. Peppers will blacken, seeds inside will pop, some juice may run out of the peppers. Peppers are cooked enough when you press the skin with a fork and the skin wrinkles around the indentation. Now put each pepper in its own ziplock bag, sealing tightly, for 20 to 30 minutes. Remove from bag. Working with a paper towel and your fingers, scrape skins off peppers. Finger nails help. Pop out stems, seeds and veins, rinse thoroughly inside and out, set peppers on paper towel to drain.
2. Make the marinade by combining marinade ingredients. Whisk together and set aside.
3. Slice peppers in half (long way) and again (across). Working with the pieces, slice very thin strips of pepper. Put sliced peppers into the marinade and stir thoroughly. Marinate 2 to 4 hours (overnight will work too) before assembling. Bring to room temperature before assembly.

To make the crostini:
Pre-heat oven to 375° and put baking rack in the middle of the oven.
1. Combine the olive oil and butter in a sauce pan and heat on medium. When bubbling, add the minced garlic and sauté until just lightly brown, about 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat immediately.
2. Slice the bread on a diagonal, about ½” thick. Brush both sides of bread with butter-olive oil mixture, leaving minced garlic in the pan. Put bread on an ungreased baking sheet, stacking in layers if necessary. Bake about 12 minutes, until barely golden brown. Remove from baking pan, cool.

Smear each crostini with a layer of goat cheese. Now pile peppers on top, using a fork so you leave the marinade in the bowl, not on the crostini! Garnish each crostini with a small basil leaf, and garnish the serving tray with larger basil sprigs. Bon appétit.