Cooking Up a Hooley in the Kitchen
By Katie Gagne
Perfect Little Fruit
It really could be the perfect fruit. It’s strawberry season, and this time of year those red berries are so sweet and bursting with flavor. I love the adventure of picking my own each June. I usually get way too ambitious and pick so many, I don’t know what to do with them all after making copious amounts of jam and lots of tarts and shortcakes. One thing I discovered over the years is how great they work in savory dishes as well as the sweet ones. Here is a quick and easy appetizer using these little red gems that you will end up making all summer.
1 pint of Strawberries – sliced
2-3 tablespoons Balsamic Vinegar
4 ounces Goat Cheese – I love the honey flavored logs.
1 tablespoon Granulated Sugar
1 tablespoon Granulated Garlic
½ teaspoon Black Pepper
1 Baguette Loaf
2 tablespoons Olive Oil
1 bunch of fresh Basil – approximately 15 leaves
Slice the strawberries and place in a bowl and sprinkle the sugar on top and set aside.
Slice the basil leaves into thin ribbons.
Slice the baguette on the bias to ½ inch thickness. Arrange on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with garlic salt and black pepper. Bake at 350* for about 8-10 minutes until lightly toasted.
Remove from oven and immediately spread the goat cheese on the warm bread slices.
Top with a few sliced strawberries for each slice and then sprinkle the basil leaves in top.
Drizzle each with a small amount of Balsamic Vinegar.
Place on a serving plate or tray.
This taste best served at room temperature.
Makes approximately 14 slices.
*Katie Gagne teaches English at Trinity High School in Garfield Heights. She is also the owner of her in-home bakery Sassy’s Sweets and Oh So Much More. You can contact her at (440) 773-4459 or at mk********@ao*.com, or find her on Facebook at @sassyssweetsandmore.