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I’m always looking for easy fun ways to entertain guests, and one of my favorites is by using toast like sweet potato toast, hummus toast and now this crostini with roasted tomatoes. Roasting the tomatoes in the oven brings out their flavor and sweetness – so good with the tart goat cheese spread on the crostini.
What is crostini?
First for all, you might be wondering what crostini is, and I’m here to tell you it’s just a fancy word for small toasted bread, but smaller than a garlic bread. It’s usually a very thin slice of bread that is often toasted or fried and then topped with cheeses, jams, honey and/or fruits and vegetables.
It’s common to serve crostini as an appetizer, especially in Italian restaurants, but it can also be served with soup, just like a crouton.
How to make crostini with roasted tomatoes
Prepare the roasted tomatoes
Start with the juiciest tomatoes you can find. You can use Roma tomatoes like I did, cherry tomatoes, compari tomatoes or beefsteak, but you may have to cut those smaller to fit the crostini. Now you can drizzle some olive oil on top, season with salt and pepper and add any fresh herbs you’d like. I recommend thyme or rosemary for the best flavor combination.
After about 45 minutes, the tomatoes will shrink up a bit and release some of their juices. You’ll notice that the thyme will get darker, but it shouldn’t burn since the oven temperature is not too high.
Prepare the crostini
Now’s the time to prepare the toast, err the crostini! You want to use a fresh large baguette and slice it the long way, but in a slight angle. Then you can season it with salt and pepper and brush olive oil on top.
When it comes out of the oven, brush the slices with a fresh garlic clove. The warmth and texture of the bread will make it super easy to grate the garlic for a boost in flavor!
Assemble crostini with roasted tomatoes
The cool thing about the first two ingredients is that you can make them in advance and have them ready in the oven whenever you’re ready to serve the crostini. You can even store them in the fridge technically. When it comes time to assemble though, spread some goat cheese on each slice of crostini.
I use a chevre honey cheese that is lightly whipped with a tangy taste and smooth texture. You can use any other type of spreads you prefer.
And finally add the roasted tomatoes on top of the crostini. It’s wonderful how the Roma tomatoes fit so perfectly with the sliced baguette. And it’s amazing how satisfied that makes me 🙂
Tips for making crostini
- Use a baking dish or a baking sheet pan with lip. Aside from the olive oil you’ll drizzle on top of the tomatoes, the tomatoes themselves will release liquid in the process of roasting. The right roasting vessel will keep the juices from falling into the oven.
- Buy ripe and juicy tomatoes. Roasting tomatoes brings out the sugars and flavor of the tomato (just like any other fruit). So the more ripe the tomato, the better flavor you’ll have.
- Adjust the roasting time depending on the tomato sizes and your preference. The large tomatoes will need more time to roast. And the longer the tomatoes roast, the more they will shrink, and the deeper their flavor will be.
- Don’t forget to add fresh herbs to the tomatoes. You can add bright fresh herbs when the tomatoes are finished roasting, but there’s also a lot to be said about herbs roasting with the juices and acidity of the tomatoes
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the difference between a crostini and bruschetta?
They are pretty similar! But I found this helpful guide that explains the difference well. Basically, bruschetta is made by toasting whole, large slices of Italian bread, while crostini are sliced and toasted from smaller, finer-textured bread, like a baguette.
Can I freeze crostini?
Yes, but it’s best to freeze them before baking. You can brush the olive oil on top, season with salt and pepper and then lay flat on a baking dish in the freezer. When frozen, you can then transfer them to a freezer-safe bag. When you’re ready to make them, remove from the freezer, follow the cooking instructions and add 5 additional minutes.
This is one of those recipes that definitely looks more fancy that it really is! It comes together pretty much with bread, cheese and tomatoes. But it’s how we prepare the crostini that’s perfectly toasted and smothered in garlic, and how we gently roast the tomatoes with thyme that really makes this appetizer stand out. It’s a great way to pique your appetite before the main course!
For more easy appetizers:
- Feta Dip
- Cheese Board
- Tomato Basil Bruschetta
- Cauliflower Fritters
- Whipped Goat Cheese Stuffed Tomatoes
- Simple Guacamole
- Baked Brie Cranberry in Bread Bowl
If you’ve tried this healthy-ish feel good Crostini with Roasted Tomatoes recipe or any other recipe on FeelGoodFoodie, then don’t forget to rate the recipe and leave me a comment below! I would love to hear about your experience making it. And if you snapped some shots of it, share it with me on Instagram so I can repost on my stories!
Crostini with Roasted Tomatoes
- 4 roma tomatoes halved lengthwise
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil plus more for brushing
- Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme plus more for garnishing
- 8 slices baguette cut diagonally into ½ inch thickness
- 1 garlic clove
- 2 ounces honey Chèvre goat cheese
- Preheat the oven to 375°F degrees. Place the tomatoes in a shallow baking dish, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt, pepper and thyme; toss to combine.
- Adjust the tomatoes so they are cut side up, and roast until the tomatoes soften and slightly shrink, about 40-45 minutes.
- Place the baguette slices on a wired baking sheet, brush with olive oil, sprinkle salt and pepper, and bake in the oven until golden brown, about 10 minutes.
- Rub the crostini with garlic and then divide the goat cheese between the crostini. Top with one slice of roasted tomato, drizzling any extra juice over the top. Garnish with fresh thyme and serve immediately.