Spring is here! It’s the perfect season for entertaining, especially outdoors, and I love using strawberries to create simple, light party snacks that my guests will love. I’m a firm believer that hosting gatherings should be fun for me in addition to the attendees so I never want to stress out over complicated appetizers. Fresh, flavorful ingredients are key. For this easy crostini recipe I’ve macerated sliced strawberries in citrus juice and paired them with ricotta cheese that’s full of fresh herbs.
This is a light snack that won’t be overly filling in warmer weather. And it’s healthy! Research suggests eating just 1 cup of strawberries a day may improve heart health, lower blood pressure, reduce the risk of some cancers and support brain function. How cool is that?
I used a combination of herbs from my garden (basil, mint and sage) but feel free to experiment. For example, if you are not a fan of sage, simply omit it! If you really love mint, add extra to taste.
- 1 baguette, sliced thin on a bias
- 15 ounces ricotta, either part skim or whole
- ½ cup packed fresh herbs, finely chopped (an even mix of mint, basil and sage)
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 3 cups strawberries, hulled and sliced thin
- 1 teaspoon fresh squeezed lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon fresh squeezed orange juice
- thinly sliced fresh mint or basil for garnish
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Place the baguette slices on a baking sheet and toast until crisp, 7-10 minutes.
- In a medium bowl, combine the ricotta, mint, basil, sage, salt and pepper. In a separate medium bowl, combines the strawberries and citrus juices. Cover each bowl and place them in the refrigerator for at least 60 minutes. Stir the berries occasionally.
- Spread a generous layer of the herbed ricotta onto each slice of bread. Top with 3-4 strawberries. Top with the fresh herbs. Optional: drizzle with a small amount of the macerated strawberry juice (not too much or the bread might get soggy).