Fall Bruschetta

Hubby and I are off to Canada for a long weekend today. We’re going to see Niagara Falls with some friends from college. I’m really looking forward to the extra long weekend. But don’t worry, I have some posts scheduled to keep you guys company while we’re away. I finally admitted to myself (and my stomach) that fall has arrived. So now I’m starting to get really excited about all the fall baking that I have coming up!

This bruschetta screams fall to me. I brought it to Megan’s surprise birthday party and it was a big hit. As you can see, the recipe includes butternut squash, apple, and eggplant. I honestly couldn’t taste the apple or eggplant, so if I made this again, I’d probably leave them out unless I had some in the house to get rid of… Since I can’t eat ricotta, I subbed goat cheese. Feel free to use whichever you prefer. When the topping came out of the oven, I tasted it and thought it needed some texture. So I added some toasted walnuts. The texture was a nice addition and I’m glad I made it!

This fall bruschetta is a great appetizer to bring to a potluck or party. I brought all of the components (toasts, goat cheese, and topping), then assembled them once we got to Megan’s place. It worked out really well.

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Fall Bruschetta

Yield: Serves 10

Ingredients:

For the Toasts:
1 baguette
Olive oil

For the Caramelized Onion:
1 red onion
1 Tbsp olive oil
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
2 Tbsp sugar

For the Topping:
1 Tbsp olive oil
3 cups peeled & cubed butternut squash
1 1/2 cups finely diced eggplant, unpeeled
1 cup finely diced apple,unpeeled
kosher salt & freshly ground pepper
1 tsp smoked paprika
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped and toasted

1 cup goat cheese, at room temp

Directions:

To make the Toasts:
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Slice the baguette into 1/2" slices & lay them out on a baking sheet. Drizzle the bread slices with some olive oil & bake for about 5 minutes per side, or until lightly browned. Set aside.

To make the Caramelized Onions:
Quarter & thinly slice the onion. Heat 1 Tbsp of olive oil in a non-stick skillet. Add the onions, balsamic vinegar & sugar. Cook until the onions are softened & all the liquid is absorbed. Set aside.

To make the Topping:
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. In a mixing bowl, toss the butternut squash, eggplant, apple, 1 Tbsp olive oil & smoked paprika. Season with salt & pepper. Spread the mixture out on a baking sheet & bake for 20-25 minutes, tossing halfway through, until the squash is just tender.

Transfer to a mixing bowl; add the onions and walnuts. Toss well. Check for seasoning & add a bit more salt & pepper, if needed.

To assemble:
Spread a bit of ricotta cheese over each toast, then spoon some of the bruschetta on top. Transfer to a serving platter & serve.

Recipe adapted from The Parsley Thief

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13 Responses to “More cheeses I can eat!!”

  1. #
    1
    Yankee1969 — April 15, 2008 at 10:05 pm

    I’m guessing you’ve tried Manchego? It’s my favorite sheep’s milk cheese.

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    2
    Deana — April 15, 2008 at 10:46 pm

    I’m lactose intolerant too, and cheese is what I miss most. I’m curious about the goat cheese and sheep’s milk cheese; according to what I’ve read, goats’ milk and sheep’s milk have almost the same amount of lactose as cows’ milk. How is it that the cheese doesn’t have lactose? I’d be interested in any resources you could pass on because I’d love to be able to eat some cheese again!

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    3
    Yankee1969 — April 15, 2008 at 10:48 pm

    I’m lactose-tolerant, but according to a Good Eats episode on cheese, most of the lactose is removed during the cheese making process, so that’s why most lactose-intolerant people can eat it. My g/f is Asian and very lactose-intolerant, but she can eat cheese with no problem. Ice cream (which she will eat when she gets the craving) does her no good at all, but cheese is usually fine.

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    4
    Deana — April 15, 2008 at 10:58 pm

    That’s interesting. I know lactose intolerance is different for each person. Unfortunately for me, eating cheese (and ice cream) is like a death-wish, but I have read that cheese that’s made traditionally, aged 2 yrs., has nearly no lactose in it. That’s hard to find though. I haven’t heard that goat cheese and sheep cheese have less lactose. But perhaps most goat and sheep cheese are aged?

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    5
    Yankee1969 — April 15, 2008 at 11:11 pm

    I actually have the GE episode on my TiVo (Cheese: Good Milk Gone Bad) and he says that cheeses that have a little age on them have had their lactose consumed by the bacteria so there’s little if any lactose left. I just replayed that portion for the exactish quote.
    I think goat/sheep cheese is similar to cow in that it can be fresh or aged. I think Manchego has fresh and aged varieties. If you have a good cheese source nearby, you should be able to find well-aged (2+ years) varieties of cheddar at the very least. A Canadian, English, Irish, or Austrailian. All are very good.
    I truly feel sorry for you, as I love a nice extra sharp cheddar, Parma Reggiano, etc.
    And really, it’s not my intention to torture you. 🙂

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    6
    Deana — April 15, 2008 at 11:30 pm

    Thanks for looking that up for me! I’ll have to test the waters the next time I’m feeling brave…:) I would LOVE it if I could eat some cheese again!

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    7
    Jen — April 16, 2008 at 9:48 pm

    The only reason I eat goat and sheep milk cheese is because when my doctor told me I was LI, she said I could eat those. So that’s what I’ve been doing. I am very sensative to all cow dairy, but haven’t ever had problems with the goat or sheep cheese…

    I haven’t tried Machego… I’ll have to look for it.

  8. #
    8
    Yankee1969 — April 16, 2008 at 9:51 pm

    I first had Manchego at a tapas place near Phoenix on a cheese and fruit plate. I had no idea what I was missing. 🙂

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    9
    Lina — April 17, 2008 at 5:12 am

    oh my gosh! a fellow cheese junkie! haha

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    10
    ttfn300 — April 20, 2008 at 3:23 am

    So I’ve been lactose intolerant since I went away to college… but I still enjoy most of my favorites. Lactaid works wonders!!! I carry the pills around with me all the time and enjoy most of the foods I love. Regarding the different milks, goats milk does indeed have lactose, it is just less than traditional cows milk so more people can tolerate it. I’m sure different processes in which you make cheese, etc could effect it, and everyone’s sensitivity is different as well. I adjusted quickly to Lactaid milk, and they have cottage cheese, ice cream (but i stick to the good ol’ stuff), and some other products I have yet to try. I urge fellow LI folks not to give up your (and my!!) favorite foods!!!

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    madmamma2007 — May 1, 2009 at 12:53 pm

    I found this website of sheeps cheese and it appears it is good for people with LI.

    http://www.sheepscheese.com/

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    12
    Jen — May 15, 2009 at 1:05 am

    Yep! Sheep cheese is my friend for sure.

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    Catherine — January 1, 2010 at 10:46 pm

    I am severely lactose intolerant but love food and cooking, so this has been a difficult adjustment for me as well. Parmigiana Reggiano is lactose free as well as; Grana Padano, all Finlandia cheeses including Muenster and Lappi. I use Lappi as a substitute for Mozzarella as it has similar texture and flavour. Muenster has worked well as a substitute for many cheeses as it has great flavour. There are some cheeses that I cannot tolerate such as mozzarella. Goat cheese does have lactose, but also has a protein in it that is different from that in cow’s milk. This makes it much more easily digestible and is great for those with lactose intolerance. Hope this is helpful! p.s. – I make my own ice cream by making creme anglaise with lactose free 2% milk.

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