Happy Monday friends! We may be halfway through September, school is in session, football is back (Hallelujah!), but there are still 12 days left of SUMMER. While I love pumpkin as much as the next gal, I am pump(kin)-ing the breaks on all things Fall until we officially wave goodbye to Summer and all of the yummy produce that comes with it. Don’t worry, I do have some great Fall recipes coming, but let’s enjoy what we have while we have it, you know? Plus, late Summer produce is booming right now, especially the tomatoes!
I scooped up a basket of mini-heirlooms at the farmer’s market and they are still sweet as candy. I figured with football here, and end of season dinner parties, what better way to enjoy these little Summer gems than by adding carbs, cheese, and fresh pesto to make a beautiful and delicious appetizer!
I love serving crostini appetizers, especially to guests, because they look elegant, but they are usually super easy to put together! The key to getting your crostini a little bit bigger to fit all of those toppings is to slice your bread on a diagonal. This creates more surface area to pile on those tomatoes! The bread is brushed with olive oil before broiling to create the perfect sturdy, crispy vehicle for all of the tomato, burrata, pesto goodness!
Now let’s talk cheese, specifically burrata. Easily one of the greatest food creations of all time. Anyone else agree with me on this? And if you’ve never had burrata before, you are in for a real treat! It is a creamy filled mozzarella. The outside is firm, but when split open, the most heavenly creamy cheese explodes from the center. It’s been much more popular in recent years, so even though it sounds fancy, I have never had trouble finding it at the grocery store.
The pesto drizzle adds a fresh, bright flavor and balances out the creaminess from the burrata beautifully. I love adding a touch of lemon juice to my pesto to really add a little extra tang. I will say this – you could buy pesto from the store. You totally could. No judgements. I’ve done it. BUT, it will never ever taste as good as the fresh homemade stuff. It just won’t. Especially right now when basil is so plentiful, snag a bunch, and throw it in your food processor or blender. I can guarantee you already have the rest of the ingredients at home – garlic, a little lemon juice, parmesan cheese, olive oil, salt and pepper. In 5 minutes or less, you have epic homemade pesto. Done and done. And the best part? Any unused portion can easily be frozen in an ice cube tray and saved for a later recipe. Finding pesto cubes in my freezer that I forgot about is one of the best feelings…especially when pasta night starts calling my name!
Once you have the crostini toasted, the tomatoes cut, and pesto done, assembly is pretty easy. Cut open a ball of burrata to serve alongside your crostini. The flavor combination will not disappoint, I promise!Print
An easy, elegant, and delicious crostini appetizer with mini heirloom tomatoes, creamy burrata cheese and a fresh pesto drizzle.
- 6 ½ – ¾ inch slices sourdough batard, cut on a diagonal
- 1 ½ cups mini heirloom tomatoes, sliced in half
- 2 fresh balls of burrata
- 2 cups packed fresh basil leaves
- ½+ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 1/3 cup raw pine nuts, toasted. See note below
- ¼ cup fresh grated parmesan cheese
- ½ lemon, juiced
- Salt and black pepper to taste
- Make the pesto by combining the basil leaves, garlic, cooled pine nuts, and lemon juice in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse a few times. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add ½ cup olive oil, salt and pepper. Turn on high for 10-20 seconds, and add an extra tablespoon or two of olive oil as needed, until you’ve reached your desired consistency. Transfer to another bowl and stir in grated parmesan cheese. Set aside.
- Turn oven to BROIL on high, and adjust oven rack to upper level. Prepare the sliced bread by brushing both sides with olive oil. Arrange on a baking sheet, and broil for 3-4 minutes, or until desired darkness. Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly before arranging on a platter.
- Top toasts with heirloom tomatoes. Cut burrata and add to your platter before drizzling everything with your pesto.
Toast the pine nuts by adding them to a medium skillet over medium heat, stirring frequently, until fragrant, 3-5 minutes. Allow to cool before adding to the remaining ingredients.