Strawberry & Goat Cheese Bruschetta

If you haven’t noticed, we’re crazy about fresh, local strawberries here at The Café …………..
………. we eat big bowls full of them drizzled with honey for breakfast and snacks and I try to use them in a zillion ways before the illusive, wonderful season slips away.  This year, my freezer shelves are happily sagging with four batches of Strawberry Freezer Jam.  I’ve also made Strawberry Balsamic Pizza w/ Roasted Chicken, Sweet Onion, Applewood Bacon, a fabulous Arugula and Blueberry Salad with a fresh strawberry vinaigrette.

You might be getting tired of my strawberry recipes or perhaps you don’t even like strawberries – don’t worry, I’ve got all kinds of fresh, new recipes up my sleeve for this spring/summer season. Sadly, to me, it’s getting to the end of the strawberry season here in Southeastern US, so I’m sharing one last delightful recipe you’ll want to tuck in your appetizer/snack file; Strawberry & Goat Cheese Bruschetta – a bit of a fresh take-off on my Strawberry Balsamic Pizza as we love that flavor combination so much. It’s crunchy, creamy, sweet, salty and spicy all rolled into one – try it, you might just make a meal of it!
P.S. This recipe makes quite a few bruschettas – cut it in half to make a smaller batch.

Strawberry & Goat Cheese Bruschetta

Ingredients:
½ recipe Classic Crostini – see below
½ cup cooked, crumbled bacon
¼ cup balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon strawberry jam – I use this Strawberry Freezer Jam
½ medium  jalapeño, very finely chopped
4 ounces goat cheese, room temperature
24 medium strawberries
2 tablespoon finely chopped fresh basil

Directions:
1. Combine balsamic vinegar, strawberry jam and jalapeño in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes or until syrupy. Mixture will thicken a bit more as it cools. Set aside to cool while you prepare bruschetta.

2. Spread each crostini slice with goat cheese, and sprinkle with bacon. Drizzle with a bit of the balsamic reduction and top with sliced strawberries. Sprinkle decoratively with basil and a bit more of the balsamic mixture. (I used the Spicy Globe Basil that I grow in my herb garden.) It has tiny, flavorful leaves, but regular sweet basil, chopped fine works equally well).
PRINTABLE RECIPE

Classic Crostini

Ingredients:
1 long, thin good quality baguette – I don’t have a really good bakery nearby, so I like to either make them myself or use LaBrea baguettes, which are often available at larger grocery chains.
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon dried rosemary leaves
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
few dashes paprika

Directions:
Preheat oven to 400˚F. Cover large sheet pan with foil. Slice bread into 1/4″ thick slices. Arrange on foil covered baking sheet in a single layer. Mix together oil, butter and rosemary and place in microwave for 30 seconds or until butter is melted. Brush tops of each slice with olive oil mixture. If desired sprinkle lightly with paprika, kosher salt and fresh ground pepper. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown and crisp. Cool completely and store in an airtight container.

Notes:
~ Crostini means “little toasts” in Italian. These tasty little treats are golden, crispy, slices of Italian or French bread. They are great for snacking, dipping, floating on soups or serving along side salads in place of croutons. You can top them with bruschetta, or various spreads and/or cheeses and serve them as hors d’ oeuvres. They are wonderful for last minute parties or unexpected guests as they can be prepared in minutes.

~ Feel free to use olive oil only for these crostini instead of the butter/olive oil combination. Try different flavored oil and/or varying the type of herb. We like them with Italian seasoning, oregano, dill or lemon pepper.



9 thoughts on “Strawberry & Goat Cheese Bruschetta”

  • Fabulous recipe! No I’m not getting tired of strawberry recipes – how could I – they’re all so delicious. Love the presentation of the bruschetta – so pretty!
    Mary x

  • This is so fresh looking and beautiful. I just earned that Feta is made from sheep’s milk. But many domestic kinds do not use sheep milk, they use cow or goats.

  • Your collection of recipes with strawberries is simply mouth-watering! This one is gorgeous!

  • I’ve enjoyed rejoicing in strawberry season with you. Sadly, I’ve yet to make it to the fields and pick some this year. (It needs to stop raining and dry up a bit!)

    Your bruschetta looks fantastic. I’m intrigued by your spicy globe basil. I’ll have to keep an eye out for it.

  • I would not want to cut this delicious recipe in half. Or maybe I could pretend I did and stash half for some private munching! It looks wonderful Chris and thanks so much for being a great friend. Blessings!

  • My god! I like how you are playing with strawberries! I once had a bruschetta with cherries and goat cheese and it was amazing. I’m sure with the straweberries it would be pretty much the same. I’ll have to try a lot of your recipes in june!

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