It’s officially that time of year, spring is in the air, the weather is (hopefully!) finally warming up and the beginning of a crisp new season is fast upon us. Easter is also around the corner (OK so it’s this weekend!) and whether you celebrate the holiday or not, a nice springtime brunch can be the perfect way to spend time with family and friends.
We’ve got a simple yet savory spread for you to whip up that is a perfect complement to the holiday festivities. The delicious strawberry tomato crostinis add a fresh twist to the classic recipe. Add in the butter lettuce and baby kale salad (a perfect mix of greens!) topped off with delicious roasted hazelnuts and beets for a nice flavor blend. Add in some of your favorite beverages and you’re good to go!
Strawberry Tomato Crostinis
•9-10 strawberries, rinsed and sliced into small dice
•4 Roma tomatoes, rinsed and diced (same size as strawberries)
•2 ⅔ T sweet, nice balsamic vinegar
•1 ⅓ cloves fresh garlic, minced
•Sea salt & ground pepper to taste
•1 ⅓ large, fresh baguette
•5 ⅓ oz mozzarella, diced to match strawberries (Omit for vegan recipe!)
•1 ⅓ bunch fresh basil
•1 ⅓ cup fresh pesto (see recipe below for vegan pesto!)
•Edible flowers (optional)
1. In small bowl, combine strawberries, tomatoes, balsamic vinegar, garlic, and salt and pepper and toss lightly to combine. Cover and refrigerate at least 30 minutes.
2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
3. Slice baguette into semi-thin slices on a diagonal.
4. Spread pesto onto slices.
5. Line cookie sheet with parchment paper and spread out baguette slices next to each other.
6. Roast in oven about 5-8 minutes until warm and barley crispy. Remove from oven.
7. When ready to serve, remove strawberry mixture and scoop one large spoonful on top of each bread slice, careful not to overload it! Decorate with edible flower or fresh basil leave.
Butter Lettuce and Baby Kale Salad
with roasted hazelnuts, avocado, and roasted beets, lemon vinaigrette
Yield: 20 people
Cookie sheet (roast beets)
Tin foil (roast beets)
•1 cup hazelnuts, roasted & chopped OR 1 cup toasted quinoa (precooked in water & roasted until crunchy)
•3 large beets, any color
•3 T fresh squeezed orange juice
•2 heads butter lettuce
•2-3 heads fresh spinach
•¼-½ cup lemon vinaigrette (see lemon vinaigrette recipe)
1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
2. Rinse beets and wrap each beet with 1 T freshly squeezed orange juice in tin foil tightly.
3. Roast beets in oven for about 45-60 minutes until soft. Remove from foil and let cool.
4. With gloves on, remove beet skins by peeling off gently with your fingers. Slice beets into quarters and then into thin slices.
5. Rinse butter lettuce and spinach well. Let dry.
6. Chop into large bite-sized pieces.
7. In large serving bowl, toss lettuce, spinach, beets, avocado and hazelnuts lightly.
8. Drizzle lemon vinaigrette on top and toss well.
9. Serve with tongs.