I have a minimalistic philosophy when it comes to appetizers. When trying to time a multiple-course dinner, complicated appetizers are completely absurd. In my opinion, a simple starter is like a secret weapon to keep the dinner guests content while you are putting the finishing touches on your second-course masterpiece.
This appetizer should definitely go in your dinner party tool kit. It is no-fuss, yet elegant and it is the perfect opening act for your next gastronomic symphony.
We begin by roasting our grapes with balsamic vinegar, olive oil, and a hearty amount of freshly ground black pepper. The sweetness of the grapes pairs really well alongside the tangy vinegar and spicy pepper.
I love the depth of flavor that roasting brings out. I really want to roast just about everything this time of year.
You can even roast the grapes ahead of time and warm them up just before serving.
Though this is the perfect way to begin your dinner party, that is not to say that you necessarily need a crowd to enjoy a delightful appetizer. If you would like to sit on the sofa and call this dinner I will be the first to applaud you.
It's Wednesday and I think we all need some mid-week simplicity.
Balsamic-Roasted Grape Crostini
for the grapes
- 2 cups red grapes
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
In a small bowl combine grapes, salt, balsamic vinegar, olive oil and black pepper. Toss to coat. Spread the grapes out on a baking sheet lined with parchment. Roast for 15-20 minutes or until the grapes have begun to wilt and the vinegar has thickened to a syrup-like consistency.
toasts and assembly
- 1 fresh baguette
- olive oil
- 2 oz chèvre
Turn oven to the broiler setting.
Slice the baguette into 16 slices, about 1/2 inch in thickness. Brush each side with olive oil. Toast under the broiler for 5-7 minutes or until golden brown on the edges.
Spread each toast with chèvre and top with warm roasted grapes. Serve immediately. Enjoy!