Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Cranberry Pomegranate Brushetta

This Bruschetta is packed with flavor, delicious crunch, sweet, salt, orange zest, and all these ingredients screams Christmas. This is a beautiful and bright, fresh appetizer. Besides being delicious as a bruschetta topping it’s also fantastic spooned over a block of cream cheese or a log of goat cheese. Add a sprinkle of finely chopped fresh parsley and you’ve got a appetizer that is perfect for the holidays. Serve this with crisp crackers. 
Oh, and if you’re looking for a way to dress up every-day chicken this crimson relish will do the trick. Use it as a festive, healthy topping for grilled or pan-seared boneless chicken breasts. With fresh cranberries, pomegranate arils, honey, ginger, orange zest and a splash of heat it’s sweet, and bursting with amazing flavor. I am so glad I found this recipe and will be making this time and time again..

  • For the cranberry-pomegranate relish:
  • 1 pound fresh (or frozen) cranberries, washed
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh ginger, don't worry about chopping it too fine at this point
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ¼ cup honey
  • ½ cup roughly chopped fresh parsley
  • zest from one orange, reserve a bit for garnish
  • ¾-1 cup pomegranate arils, plus reserve a few for garnish
  • finely chopped fresh  parsley, for garnish
  • For the crostini:
  • 1 thin, good quality baguette, sliced about ¼ inch thick
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened 
  1. Place the cranberries, ginger, sugar, honey  in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse on and off several times till cranberries are coarsely chopped. Don't process too much.
  2. Add parsley and pulse a few more times. Not too much, you want parsley bits to be visible and mixture to be a bit chunky.
  3. Transfer to a storage container and add pomegranate arils* and orange zest. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or till ready to use.
  4. For the crostini, preheat oven to 350˚F. Line 2 sheet pans with foil or parchment paper, if desired for easy clean up.
  5. Place baguette slices on prepared pans. Brush lightly with oil. Sprinkle lightly with salt and a grind of pepper.
  6. Bake for 14-18 minutes or until golden, rotating pans halfway through baking time.
  7. To assemble bruschetta, whisk cream cheese until creamy. Spread about ½-1 tablespoon on each crostini. Top with a scoop of the relish. Garnish with a bit of orange zest, if desired.

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