The start of spring signals change and new beginnings, so why not blossom into a culinary master with dishes that are sure to impress, are easy to prepare, and will allow you to spend time with your guests instead of in the kitchen?
The following recipe is a gourmet delight made with a childhood favourite, Sun-Maid Raisin Cinnamon Swirl Bread. It is a cinnamon raisin treat transformed into a sophisticated, grown-up appetizer. For an extra pop of colour, use mixed colour heirloom tomatoes.
- 2 tablespoons (30 mL) olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon (2 mL) finely minced garlic
- 6 slices Sun-Maid Raisin Cinnamon Swirl Bread
- 1 cup (250 mL) diced cherry tomatoes
- 1 tablespoon (15 mL) thinly sliced basil
- 1/4 teaspoon (1 mL) balsamic vinegar
- Pinch Kosher salt
- 2 ounces (57 g) soft goat cheese or cream cheese
- Heat oven to 375(F (190(C). Combine olive oil and garlic in a microwave-safe dish; microwave on HIGH (100% power) for 20 seconds to infuse garlic flavor. Place raisin bread on a baking sheet. Brush top of bread slices with garlic olive oil. Bake 6 minutes; turn and bake additional 6 minutes or until toasted. Remove toasts from baking sheet and cool on a wire rack. Cut diagonally into quarters. Can be stored covered for up to 2 days. Combine tomatoes, basil, balsamic vinegar and salt in a small bowl. Spread toasts lightly with cheese; top with a small spoonful of tomato salsa. A video of this recipe, with a step-by-step demonstration, is available online at www.sunmaid.ca.
John Placko is the director of culinary excellence at Canada Bread.