Grilled Asparagus Bruschetta with Chèvre and Tapenade
30 minutes or fewer
30 MINUTES OR LESS
This makes a hearty hors d’oeuvre or a rustic first course.
- 2 Tbs. olive oil plus extra for drizzling
- 1 lb. asparagus, tough ends trimmed and spears peeled and blanched
- 4 slices Italian country bread, cut ½-inch thick
- 1 large clove garlic, peeled and sliced
- 4 tsp. tapenade, or more to taste
- 4 oz. mild chèvre such as Montrachet cheese
- ½ cup black olives, pitted and chopped
- Freshly ground black pepper to taste
- Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a ridged grill pan or skillet over medium-high heat. Add asparagus and cook, turning frequently, until tender and golden brown. Remove from pan, and set aside.
- Rub both sides of bread with cut side of garlic. Add remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil to a ridged grill pan or skillet, and heat over medium heat. Place bread in pan, and cook for about 4 minutes per side, or until golden and crisp. Remove from pan, and let stand until cool enough to handle.
- Spread 1 teaspoon tapenade on one side of each bread slice. Top tapenade with 1 ounce chèvre, either spreading cheese or crumbling it. Top chèvre with asparagus, cut to fit bread. Scatter olives over top, drizzle with olive oil and season with black pepper. Cut in half, and serve warm.
A crisp and lively Pinot Grigio is a good match for this dish with its sharp, tangy flavors of goat cheese, garlic and olives. Try the di Lenardo Pinot Grigio or Chardonnay, both delightful Italian whites that are perfect for this spring starter.