Sunday, November 28, 2010

Caramelized Pear & Brie Crostini

Wow. I can't believe that I received so many "welcome back" comments on my last post! I thought for sure that I had completely lost all my readers after being gone for so long! Thanks so much, everyone, for all your support! It really means a lot to me that you haven't given up on me/the blog. =) I will take pictures of my kitchen soon! I'm waiting for a good sunny day...which is rare these days in Seattle. hehe.

Whew! I meant to post earlier in the week, but I've been super busy with Thanksgiving. It's my favorite holiday of all time. What could be better than cooking, eating, and shopping?! Three of my favorite things rolled up into one holiday! Not to mention, a four-day weekend. =)

We always celebrate Thanksgiving on Saturday and for the past couple of years, I've been in charge of the entire dessert spread, which consisted of: (1) Pumpkin Cheesecake, (2) Apple Pie, (3) Pumpkin Pecan Pie, (4) Caramel Corn, (5) Peppermint Bark Dark Chocolate Brownies, and (5) Gingerbread cookies - all decorated in snowflake patterns! What made it on your dessert table this year?

My BFF Kelly and I are hardcore about Black Friday Shopping. We get up every year at 4am and shop 'til we drop! This year, I was extremely productive and finished all of my Christmas shopping! We woke up at 4am, shopped for 9 hours, then went home and rested for 20 minutes. After which, I baked for 8 hours straight and ended up going to bed at 1am! BEST DAY EVER.

Earlier today, Hubby and I put up the tree - a red and silver themed tree with sprays of cranberries and pine cones! We also wrapped all the presents with 4 different types of red and silver wrapping paper, to match. It's super beautiful!! All in all, it's been an incredibly productive and fun weekend! I hope everyone else had as much fun as I did!

Today's recipe is a toasted crostini, topped with Brie, Gorgonzola, caramelized cinnamon pear, and minced chives. The cheese is gooey and suuuuper creamy. The crostini is incredibly crispy and has a great crunch to it. This is one of my favorite recipes of all time. Yes, it's just that amazing.

(1) The Crostini

You'll need a baguette, preferably day-old. The trick is to slice it suuuuuper thin. The thinner you can slice it, the better. Seriously, I can't stress it enough. Mine are less than 1/4inch thick.

Slicing thin pieces of bread can be difficult to do. What will help is a super sharp knife. So grab the sharpest one you have. If you slice it too thick, it won't toast up to be crispy. This recipe calls for a completely crunchy crostini- think crouton crispy. Just say no to soft centers~! =)

Line them up on a cookie sheet and coat them with olive oil. Make sure you do both sides.

It's easier if you use Pam olive oil spray, as opposed to brushing it on. It'll take 30 seconds to spray each side.

When you bake them, let them get golden brown, but be careful not to let it get too dark. You'll have to return them to the oven for about 5 minutes to melt the cheese later, so if you let them get too dark now, they'll burn later. Set aside. (Since they're totally crisped through, they will not get soggy if left on the pan.)

(2) Caramelized Pear

You'll want to pick some ripe pears. However, they still need to be firm.

Peel and dice into small, one centimeter cubes.

Melt butter, cinnamon, and brown sugar. Let it simmer and thicken. Then add a small amount of apple juice. Let simmer some more, stirring continuously.

Add the pears and let it cook down and thicken some more.

When done, it should look like a thick and gooey apple pie filling.

(3) Assembling the Crostini

You'll need crumbled Gorgonzola and small slices of Brie.

You'll also some chives. Make sure to chop them into tiny pieces.

First top the crostini with Brie. The Brie tends to get really sticky, so it's easier just to smear it onto the crostini, like you would butter.

Then, top with Gorgonzola. Generously. Very very generously.

Return to the oven for about 5 minutes to melt the cheese.

Top with the caramelized pear.

Then sprinkle with chives. You're done! Serve immediately or they'll get soggy.

Ok look, I don't want any of you to get weirded out by all these seemingly different flavors mashed up together in one crostini. It might sound gross - you know, the sweet with the savory. But TRUST ME. This is the most amazing combination of flavors your tongue will ever experience. Everyone who's ever tried this has been super amazed by its deliciousness. The flavors just work. I can't explain it. It just tastes really gourmet. The flavors are very sophisticated and compliment each other in the best way possible.

You'll just have to try it yourself and prepare to be blown away! Seriously, try it for nothing else other than your curiosity. And to surprise all your friends. It'll be fun to see their reactions, I promise. =)

CLICK HERE for the recipe


  1. I'm a little late at the Welcome Back!!! But. I love crostini appetizers - they come in so handy over the holidays (even if you just use them for dip)! These look incredible (love the pear addition) - and a definite holiday keeper. Looking forward to seeing the new kitchen (and everything else) - glad you are back to blogging!

  2. This looks and sounds amazing! Everything in your dessert spread also sounds yummy and I'm glad you got so much done over the holidays :). I usually go to my boyfriend's Thanksgiving dinner, and their tradition is established so I don't do much cooking. However, I did contribute a chocolate salted caramel cake (my latest post) that everyone seemed to enjoy.

  3. WANT!

    We're having the annual snowball party on the 20th. You should come. Bring these!

  4. Welcome back !
    This wonderful. Some time back two of my favorite bloggers disappeared from the face of the blogosphere & now they have bother reappeared within a period of 1 month. My life feels so much better now. Welcome back & hey I wanna see some pics of that amazing kitchen, I am all Green ....

  5. This sounds and looks totally amazing. I love brie and I love pears and I love good bread.


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