It’s time to say goodbye to 2013 and welcome a new year. It’s time for a fresh start, so as an homage to fresh starts I made a roasted grape and jicama salsa served on a goat cheese crostini. The Sprouted Kitchen Cookbook by Sara Forte inspired this recipe. I bought this book last year and fell in love with her healthy, original recipes and beautiful food photography. Next time you are in your local bookstore check it out or head over to her blog: www.sproutedkitchen.com. If you want a healthy, but not too complicated cookbook, this is it! This salsa is sweet and spicy and the jicama adds a nice crunch. The mild goat cheese serves as a perfect creamy balance to the sweet salsa. This salsa will also work well as topping on fish or chicken. It comes together fairly quickly and can be made a day ahead. Try this recipe for your New Year’s Eve or Superbowl celebrations. You and your guests will love it! I tossed the grapes with a little olive oil and salt and pepper before roasting them at 425 for 45 minutes. The grapes are sweeter raw than roasted but I think the salt helps! I added half of a seeded, chopped Serrano chile but, if you like things really spicy add the whole thing. Remember a Serrano chile is hotter than a jalapeno. Half of a red onion, well chopped, is all you need. The onion flavor will get stronger as it sits but is not overpowering. How pretty is that onion? Jicama. Jicama is a mildly sweet and crispy root vegetable. It adds a great crunch to salads and salsas. I first learned about jicama while watching a Chopped episode last year. I decided to add it to the salsa because the roasted grapes no longer had a crunch to them and I like salsa with a little texture. This jicama salad recipe from Simply recipes looks fantastic! Cilantro makes a weekly appearance on our grocery list. It may be my favorite herb! It adds so much flavor and freshness especially to salsa and guacamole. I grabbed a French baguette, sliced it and toasted for a few minutes. Then I mixed together 8 ounces of goat cheese with 2 tablespoons of milk. I spread the goat cheese on the toasted baguette and topped it off with a spoonful of roasted grape + jicama salsa. Bubba tested it and loved it! The kids asked to try it…and then spit it out, but I was proud of them for trying it. They are becoming more adventurous eaters every year! Before you say goodbye to one year and welcome another, make this salsa. Bring it to a friend’s party with bottle of champagne. They will love you for it. Happy New Year!
Roasted Grape and Jicama Salsa on Goat Cheese Crostini
recipe adapted from the Sprouted Kitchen
makes about 20 crostini
1 1/2 lb or 6 cups seedless red grapes, roasted
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1 tsp of kosher salt, plus more to taste
fresh ground black pepper plus more to taste
1/2 of 1 Serrano chile, seeded and finely chopped (add the whole chile if you like more spice)
half of 1 jicama, peeled and roughly chopped
1 tbsp. red wine vinegar
1 small bunch fresh cilantro, finely chopped
half a small red onion, finely chopped
1 French or whole grain baguette
8 oz. goat cheese at room temperature
2 tbsp. milk
Directions: Pre-heat your oven to 425. Rinse and pat dry grapes. Toss grapes with 1 tablespoon of olive oil, 1 tsp of salt and 1/2 tsp of fresh ground black pepper. Place grapes on jelly roll pan, on the middle rack in the oven, and roast for 45 minutes. Finely chop chile, red onion and cilantro. Peel and roughly chop jicama. In a large bowl mix together chile, red onion, jicama, cilantro and red wine vinegar. Set aside. Once grapes are roasted, roughly chop them and add them to the salsa. Gently toss all ingredients and season to taste with sea salt and black pepper. Set aside. Mix 8 ounces of goat cheese with 2 tablespoons of milk to make it spreadable. Set aside. Slice and toast baguette. Spread about 1 tablespoon of goat cheese or as much as you like on the crostini and add a spoonful of salsa on top. Serve immediately. Leftover salsa is great topping on fish or chicken but I doubt you will have leftovers!
5 First Bites to try for 2014
This salty and sweet appetizer is a must make for this new year’s eve!
Homemade pretzel bites? Yes please! Head over to Two Peas and Their Pod for their recipe.
If you like sweet potatoes, goat cheese and pecans, try this recipe.
I really love salty and sweet combinations, as I am sure you can tell. Try this crostini combination from Foodie Crush. It is sure to be a hit!
Do you want to offer at least one healthy appetizer? Martha has you covered. Check out her spiced up hummus dip.