Pickled Strawberry Crostini

We are smack dab in the middle of strawberry season and let me tell you, I am jazzed. I'm a huge fan of any type of berry and can pretty much find a way to work them into everything I'm eating this time of year, from my cocktail to my entrée to my dessert. I've been doing a lot of pickling lately and decided I would take a stab at pickling strawberries! I'm happy to report that they are AWESOME! I can think of so many interesting ways to use these little guys (stay tuned for a pickled strawberry cocktail that I'm working on!). Throw them on top of your yogurt in the morning, add them to a cheese plate, put them on your pulled pork sandwich...the options are endless. Full disclosure, I've been eating them on their own as a little midday snack. Today I'm giving you the recipe for my pickled strawberry crostini. This is the perfect summer appetizer or hors d'oeuvre to serve at a dinner party. It's so easy and its a total taste explosion in your mouth. Without further adieu...

Pickled Strawberry Crostini 

Ingredients- makes 6 large crostini or 12 small

6 large slices of sourdough bread

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 8oz jar pickled strawberries (recipe below, these should be made the day before)

1/2 Cup Whole Milk Ricotta

1 TBS chives, finely chopped, plus some for garnish

Juice of 1/2 lemon

1 tsp extra virgin olive oil

Salt and Pepper

6 slices of prosciutto 

12 leaves of arugula

Honey (for drizzling)

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Lay slices of sourdough on a baking sheet and generously drizzle with olive oil on both sides. Sprinkle one side with salt and pepper. Toast in the oven for 14 minutes or until bread has hardened. Voila, crostini!

2. Prepare herbed ricotta mixture by combining ricotta, lemon juice, chives, olive oil, salt and pepper in a bowl. Mix until lemon juice and olive oil are incorporated. 

3. Once the crostini have cooled, you are ready to assemble. Take one crostini and spread 1 TBS of herbed ricotta. Top with 1 or 2 leaves of arugula, depending on the size. Place prosciutto on top of arugula, I like to tear the prosciutto pieces up so that the crostini is easier to bite. Top prosciutto with 3-4 pickled strawberries, depending on the size. Give the crostini a generous drizzle of honey and sprinkle with chives. Enjoy!

Pickled Strawberries

Ingredients - makes 1 8oz jar

4 oz/115g strawberries, hulled, halved and sliced

1/4 Cup rice wine vinegar

1/8 Cup water

1 tsp sugar

1/2 tsp Kosher Salt

10 black peppercorns 

Pinch of whole fennel seed

3-4 sprigs of lemon thyme (or regular thyme)

1. Combine vinegar, water, sugar and salt in a saucepan. Bring to a simmer. 

 

2. Mix strawberries, peppercorns, fennel seed and lemon thyme in a heat proof bowl.

 

3. Pour simmering vinegar mixture over strawberries and stir so that strawberries are coated

 

4. Leave to cool for 30 minutes, pour into an airtight jar and refrigerate overnight. Strawberries should keep for about 7-10 days.