These are so good, it's ridiculous! Sophisticated, fancy, and a complete and utter yum-fest, these crostini will blow you away. Even though the combination of toppings tastes best, each tastes great by itself. Serve them at your next party.

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Servings: Serves 2
  • 3 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 tsp. balsamic vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp. mirin
  • 2 tsp. shoyu
  • Salt
  • 3 to 4 cloves garlic , thinly sliced
  • 2 cups thinly sliced leeks
  • 2 cups sliced button mushrooms
  • Artichoke Spread:
    • 1 can water-packed artichoke hearts , drained
    • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
    • 1/2 to 1 tsp. umeboshi vinegar
    • 1 cup fresh basil leaves
    • 3/4 cup raw pine nuts
    • 1/4 cup lemon juice
    • 1 to 2 Tbsp. umeboshi vinegar
    • 1/4 cup olive oil
    • 4 to 6 slices thick whole grain baguette
    • Finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
    Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment.

    Combine the oil, vinegar, mirin, shoyu, and 2 pinches of salt in a skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic, leek and mushrooms. Cover the pan and when you hear sizzling, gently shake the skillet, holding the lid in place. Reduce the heat to low and braise until the leek is quite tender and deeply browned, 5 to 10 minutes. Remove the lid and allow any remaining liquid to cook off. Remove from heat and stir gently to combine.

    Blend the artichoke hearts, olive oil and umeboshi vinegar in a food processor until smooth. Remove from the food processor and set aside.

    Blend the basil, pine nuts, lemon juice, umeboshi vinegar, and oil in the food processor until smooth. Adjust seasonings to taste.

    Brush the bread lightly with oil on both sides. Arrange the bread on a baking sheet and sprinkle lightly with salt. Bake until the bread is lightly browned and crispy at the edges.

    Spread the artichoke mixture on the bread, mound the leek mixture generously on top, and finish with a dollop of pesto and a sprinkle of parsley. Serve.

    The Kind Diet by Alicia Silverstone. Published by Rodale Books. © 2009


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