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A Delicious Way to Start Your Holiday Party

img_2636Crostini are thin slices of grilled or toasted bread topped with roasted meats or vegetables, cheese or sauces. They pack a lot of flavor onto a small bite and are easy to make and assesmble—perfect for holiday get-togethers.

Here are a few ideas to inspire you, from Antica Napa Valley Chef Kim Wiss. Just rub thins slices of fresh baguette or loaf with olive oil, toast in the oven until golden (Italians traditionally  toast only one side), then spoon on one of these flavorful toppings for an elegant, delicious, wine-friendly bite.

Happy holidays!



CROSTINI WITH ROBIOLA FIORENTINA
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This topping pairs well with Antica Napa Valley Chardonnay when served on crostini,and with Antica Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon when served on grilled meat.  –Chef Kim Wiss

1 baguette, cut into 1/3 -inch slices
olive oil
4 oz. mascarpone
4 oz. Robiola, triple cream
9 Cerignola olives (green), pits removed and chopped
1 T. lemon zest
4 T. chopped parsley
salt, to taste
1-2 T. chopped chives, for garnish

Heat oven to 400F. Place bread slices on sheet pan and brush with olive oil on both sides. Toast until lightly browned on both sides and then remove from oven and pan and allow to cool.

In a medium bowl or Kitchen Aid mixer, whip the Robiola and mascarpone. By hand, stir in the chopped olives, lemon zest and parsley. Adjust for seasoning with salt. If the mixture is too soft, refrigerate for a few minutes. Place approximately 1-2 tablespoons of the mixture on each crostini and garnish with chopped chives.

 

CROSTINI WITH SALSICCIA AND STRACCHINO
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This recipe is from the Antinori Family cookbook and pairs nicely with Antica Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. It is perfect as an appetizer for entertaining or as an accompaniment to a salad for lunch or dinner.  –Chef Kim Wiss

5 oz. skinned, finely chopped sausage (smoked or cured)
3. oz. stracchino (or mascarpone)
8 slices country-style with bread, lightly toasted

Heat oven to 350F. Stir together the chopped sausage and stracchino until evenly mixed. Spread mixture on the bread and bake until hot.

 

SAUTÉED CAVOLO NERO ON CROSTINI
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After culinary school, I spent three months working at two restaurants in Florence: Buca Lapi and Procacci. This dish was on featured on the menu at Buca Lapi, and I have adjusted it to suit the American palate. At the winery, I serve this as an appetizer, but it can also be served as an accompaniment to beef and pork entrees. It is easier to find kale in the fall and winter months.   –Chef Kim Wiss

3 bunches cavolo nero (black kale, dinosaur kale)
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/4 cup olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
12+/- crostini
Freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano (optional)

Put a large pot of water on to boil. Meanwhile, wash the kale, then strip the leaves from the stem by pinching the leaf between your thumb and finger and pulling away from the stem. Once the water is boiling, add the kale leaves and a very large pinch of salt (this helps keep the leaves green). Allow to boil for approximately 10 minutes. Drain the kale, squeeze the water from the leaves and chop.

Heat the olive oil in a saute pan. Add the chopped kale and half the chopped garlic. Saute until tender, approximately 5 minutes, adding additional olive oil, if needed. Once kale is tender, add the remaining garlic, salt and pepper to taste. While still hot, place a large tablespoon of saut.ed kale on each crostini, drizzle with olive oil and, if you like, sprinkle with Parmigiano-Reggiano. Serve immediately.