June 07, 2011

Roasted asparagus crostini with ricotta, bacon, and caramelized onions

Unlike some people I know, I am not hip or trendy. Although I am addicted to designer jeans -and so ashamed of this fact, but, c'mon they're like a second skin- I will never be caught dead in those trendy jeans that are out to suffocate everyones ankles. Nor will I ever be able to pull off the adorable short A-line hair cuts. I never wear high-heals, and my toes do not peep well, so those are out too. I'm trying to get into the new belting thing, but even that is iffy.

No, I am far too practical, and I like things like Subarus and Birkenstocks that never really go out of style, mostly because they were never really in style. However, when it comes to food, I think I could be trendy.

A food blog for starters. Those are trendy, right? I mean everyone and their mom seems to have one. Another hot trend in the culinary world right now: crostini.

And so, crostini has been on my mind lately. I almost literally threw this meal together, so I don't really have any exact measurements for it, but I will say, it was quite tasty.

Roasted asparagus crostini with ricotta, bacon, and caramelized onions
about 4, maybe?
1 white onion
6 or 7 pieces bacon (I used turkey bacon)
1 bunch asparagus
loaf of good artisan bread (I used ciabatta; you probably won't use the whole thing, but I wouldn't judge you if you did)
ricotta cheese (low or whole fat, don't bother with the fat free stuff)
plenty of olive oil
To carmalize onions, cut the onion into smallish pieces and toss in a saucepan with a splash (1 tbsp?) of olive oil and a pinch (1 tsp?) of brown sugar. Cook on medium heat for 20-30 minutes, stirring every few minutes to avoid burning. Set aside when deep brown and soft. Do not wipe pan, but use it to cook the bacon, also on medium heat, until crispy. Then crumble bacon and set aside.
To roast asparagus, I will use Cindy's recipe that she shared from her comment on this recipe. (thanks again Cindy!) Wash and trim asparagus, then cut into 1" pieces. Toss together with some olive oil. Lay on a rimmed baking sheet in one layer, season with salt and plenty of pepper. Roast in oven for 10 minutes at 425.
To grill bread, cut into 1/2" slices. Brush lightly with olive oil. Lightly is the key here; olive oil has a low smoke point, and the bread will burn quickly if you coat the oil too thick. Then place on grill (stove top grill or bbq). Apply gentle pressure to the top of bread and count to 30. (A George Foreman grill would be great for this.)
Flip bread and count to 30 on the other side.
To assemble crostinis, spread bread with ricotta, then top with bacon, onions, and asparagus. Drizzle olive oil, balsamic, or lemon juice over top. Enjoy.

Dessert idea: spread crostini with ricotta, sprinkle with berries, and drizzle with honey.Mmmm....

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