Two weeks ago we spent one last weekend in Jasper National Park before the winter officially hits off here in Canada (newsflash: it already happened). However, it was already pretty cold and on Sunday morning we waited in our hotel room until the temperatures would rise at least over 0°C. And then… I discovered the wonder the Food Network Channel is. I am so glad we don’t have TV at home, because I can totally see myself getting lost in senseless and repetitive, plus highly vegan-unfriendly cooking shows every day. So I sat on the hotel bed, mesmerized by a show called Valerie’s Home Cooking, a program that considers cake mix and ready made icing valid ingredients for a home cooking show. Ridiculous or not, we (especially Daniel) evolved a massive appetite for a recipe called Pancetta Crostini.
Fast-forward exactly one week: I made my own version of scrumptious and flavourful Crispy Pesto Crostini, completely without animal products of course. Quickly roasted baguette drizzled with olive oil is the cross and crunchy base, topped with chunky and tangy pesto, and aromatic roasted cherry tomatoes, finished with some super nutritious and delicious hemp seeds. Daniel, a usually rather slow eater, had cleared off almost half the tray by the time I sat down to eat myself. I take this as a compliment and a sign for a successful recreation of the original, and you should take it as an invitation to try them yourselves!
150 grams cherry tomatoes
1/2 tablespoon olive oil
1 pinch of sea salt and pepper
1 baguette (I prefer whole wheat)
80 grams sunflower seeds
50 grams baby spinach
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 lemon, juice
sea salt and pepper to taste
1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
2. Wash cherry tomatoes and place in a baking dish. Add olive oil, salt, and pepper. Stir until cherry tomatoes are well coated, then put into the upper part of the oven.
3. Cut baguette into slices and drizzle with olive oil. Arrange them on a baking tray and put it into the lower part of the oven.
4. Toast sunflower seeds in a pan with no oil on high heat, but be careful not to burn them. Then add together with the baby spinach, olive oil, lemon juice, and salt and pepper to a food processor and pulse until a thick an chunky pesto forms.
5. Once the baguette pieces are slightly browned and crisp (about 12 minutes) take them out of the oven, spread pesto on top, add the roasted cherry tomatoes, and sprinkle with hemp seeds.
6. Enjoy while still warm!