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Roasted Grape and Mascarpone Toast

Courtesy Will Coleman
Cook Time:
40 mins
Prep Time:
10 mins
Servings:
6-8
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Chef notes

This is not your average morning toast. It’s an elegant appetizer that’s perfect for holiday hosting topped with sweetened grapes and strawberries, mascarpone cheese, a balsamic reduction and fresh mint. And while it looks fancy, it couldn’t be easier to put together. This recipe proves that you only need a handful of fresh ingredients to create a dish that will please a hungry crowd. The simple combo of sweet Champagne grapes and creamy mascarpone will bring a new world of flavor to your appetizers. 

 Our unexpected love for roasted grapes was inspired by Sheldrick Holmes, the owner of the Grail Café in Chicago. To make them, toss the grapes together with fresh strawberries, thyme, honey and grated fresh ginger; the combination of earthy thyme, sweet honey, and spiced ginger brings new life to these snackable fruits. Roast them in the oven until the skin of the fruit has blistered and you can easily smash them with a fork.

In the meantime, whip the mascarpone cheese spread with honey, the zest and juice of a lemon and spices. Once the fruit is ready, spread the mascarpone on baguette slices and top with the roasted fruit, plus balsamic and mint leaves. 

In addition to its ease, this recipe is a holiday winner because it can be served at room temperature — perfect for holiday gatherings.

Swap Options: Try this recipe with stone fruit wedges, kumquats or cranberries, or use another type of spreadable cheese such as ricotta in place of mascarpone.

Technique Tips: Keep all the components (bread, roasted fruit, mascarpone spread and garnishes) separate and allow guests to build their own toast. Treat yourself and reserve any leftover roasted fruit for a fun and delicious topping for ice cream, pudding or pound cake.

Ingredients

  • pounds (about 3 cups) seedless grapes, off the vine
  • 1 pint (about 2 cups) strawberries, quartered
  • 2 tablespoons honey, divided
  • 6-8 sprigs thyme
  • 3 small lemons, zested and juiced, divided
  • 1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
  • 8 ounces mascarpone cheese
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped almonds
  • 1 (12-inch) French baguette, sliced into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic reduction
  • Fresh mint leaves, for garnish
Fulfilled by

Preparation

1.

Preheat the oven to 375 F.

2.

In a large bowl, combine grapes, strawberries, 1 tablespoon of honey, thyme, the juice of 1 lemon and ginger.

3.

Place the fruit onto a large baking sheet and bake for 35 to 40 minutes. Once finished, remove the thyme sprigs and lightly smash the grapes with a fork.

4.

In a medium bowl, mix the mascarpone cheese, remaining tablespoon of honey, the zest and juice of the remaining lemons, nutmeg, black pepper and almonds.

5.

If serving immediately, spread a tablespoon of mascarpone cheese onto each slice of bread, top with the roasted grapes and strawberries and garnish with balsamic reduction and mint leaves. If preparing ahead, store the mascarpone dip and roasted fruit separately, in an airtight container, for up to 5 days. Assemble up to 1 hour before serving.