I’m going to help you out with your next dinner party by giving you the best appetizer recipe. It’s called the Tomato Crostini with Whipped Feta. It’s fresh, really delicious, and the recipe is very forgiving (meaning it will come out unbelievably tasty every time you make it). All the prep work can be prepared in advance, allowing you to spend more time with your guests and actually enjoy the party too. Best of all these crispy toasts with marinated tomatoes and lemony sharp feta cheese will leave your friends thinking you are not only a great cook but also a well-organized party host.
I’ve made the Tomato Crostini with Whipped Feta countless times. It’s my go-to appetizer, especially when I am serving an Italian dinner. Don’t get me wrong though, I don’t limit this recipe to just dinner parties where I am serving Italian cuisine. This is my top choice for BBQ dinners, happy hour evenings (or ‘borrel’ in Dutch), or a light lunch or snack. As a family we even like to enjoy it as a dinner course, turning our favorite appetizer into a meal. I just double the recipe when this is the case.
This recipe is adapted from Ina Garten Barefoot Contessa. I made slight changes to reduce the saltiness, and took out the toasted pine nuts due to personal preference.
Tomato Crostini with Whipped Feta
A fresh and light crostini recipe with lemony sharp feta and sweet marinated tomatoes.
- FOR THE WHIPPED FETA:85g (3oz) good feta cheese, crumbled
- 150g (5.25oz) cream cheese, at room temperature
- 1/2 cup good olive oil
- 2 tablespoons of freshly squeezed lemon juice (juice from 1/2 lemon)
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- FOR THE TOMATOES:1 pound(500g) cherry tomoates, quartered
- 1/3 cup good olive oil
- 2 shallots, minced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tablespoons good red wine vinegar
- 3 tablespoons julienned fresh basil leaves, plus extra for serving
- FOR THE CROSTINI: 1-2 baguettes (depending on how thin/thick you like your slices), cut into diagnonal baguette slices
- Step 1 FOR THE WHIPPED FETA: Place the crumbled feta and cream cheese in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blace. Pulse until the cheeses are mixed.
- Step 2 Add 1/2 cup of olive oil, the lemon juice, and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Process until smooth. Taste and add a pinch of salt if needed as there is a variation of salt content in various feta cheese brands. Cover and place in fridge until ready for assembly.
- Step 3 FOR THE TOMATOES: Combine shallots, garlic, and red wine vinegar in a medium bowl. Let sit for 5 minutes. Whisk in 1/3 cup olive oil, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper. Whisk vigorously so that the consistency becomes a bit thick.
- Step 4 Add the tomatoes and stir gently. Cover and let it sit in the fridge for at least 10 minutes.
- Step 5 PREPARE THE TOAST: When you are ready to serve, place the bread slices on a large sheet pan. Brush with olive oil and bake at 400 degrees F (205 degrees Celsius) for about 6-7 minutes, or until they are slightly toasted. Keep an eye on it as every oven heats differently. Let it slightly cool.
- Step 6 FOR THE ASSEMBLY: Spread each slice of bread with a generous amount of whipped feta. With a slotted spoon, place the tomatoes on top. Sprinkle with extra basil and serve.
- Step 7 TIP: For a nicer presentation without altering taste, try using multi-colored cherry tomatoes.