Creating recipes isn't a pastime—it's a passion. And a lot of fun.

The rules are few: Use 99% fresh ingredients (or thereabouts); make the dish simple but flavorful; make the dish flavorful but simple; be creative, not silly.

With this blog, I want to share new recipes, along with tips on ingredients and preparation, and, hopefully, show new cooks (and non-cooks) the pleasure in setting the table with a delicious homemade meal. The Briny Lemon is about fresh, simple, flavorful ingredients and easy cooking methods that help you bring the best to your family table. Your comments are welcome!

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Goat Cheese Crostini with Dried-Fruit Compote

Compotes made with a mixture of dried fruits are sweet, a little savory, and very flavorful. They make great toppings for easy crostini appetizers—and a smear of creamy goat cheese adds a tangy bite to balance the sweetness.

For this recipe, I used dates, dried Turkish apricots, and raisins. Dried cranberries, dried cherries, prunes, and figs are all tasty contenders.

Compotes aren’t just for appetizers—they make great meat relishes too. Check out Pan-Grilled Chicken Breasts with Apricot Compote. For another crostini idea, see Cream Cheese Crostini with Prosciutto and Tapenade.

Makes 25 crostini

  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2 tsp finely chopped shallot
  • 1/2 cup seedless raisins
  • 1/2 cup apricot preserves
  • 1/3 cup chopped dried Turkish apricots (about 2-1/2 oz whole)
  • 1/3 cup chopped pitted dates (about 3 oz whole)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tbsp light brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 25 1/3-inch slices of baguette, lightly toasted
  • 4 oz goat cheese, room temperature
Compote Ingredients 
Chopped Apricots and Dates 
Sliced Baguette
  1. Heat a small saucepan over medium heat and add the butter and shallot. Cook, stirring frequently, 2 minutes.
  2. Add the raisins and next 6 ingredients (through cinnamon) and season with salt and pepper. 
  3. Bring to a simmer, then decrease the heat to medium-low and cook, covered with the lid slightly ajar, until the dried fruits begin to soften, 10 minutes.
  4. Uncover and cook until the compote has thickened, about 8 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature.
  5. Lay the toasted baguette slices on a work surface and spread each with goat cheese (about 1 tsp each). Divide the compote on top.
Butter and Shallot 
Compote Mixture Beginning to Cook
Dried-Fruit Compote 
Bread Topped with Cheese and Compote
Arrange the crostini on a platter and serve.

Goat Cheese Crostini with Dried-Fruit Compote

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