Are you watching Top Chef at all this season? If not, you should be! I love the creativity of this season’s chef’s and Carrie is becoming my big-time favorite! In fact, this recipe, is a riff on the recipe she made last week. She lovingly calls it “Fancy Toast,” so I’m calling it that too. Because really, anytime you top toast with more than just butter it becomes “fancy,” right?
Holiday parties are the best!!! Or are they? Hmmmm, as I get older, I’m just not so sure. All of those strategically-placed ingredients on demitasse spoons and fancy mixed drinks served by handle-bar mustache, suspender-wearing bar tenders, leave me exhausted. I don’t want fancy, I want delicious! Don’t you? That’s why I created this simple appetizer for Avocado Pomegranate Toastettes that look pretty and taste great. I’ll leave the drinks and bar tenders up to you!
I like toast, I really do. Why do I love it? Because it’s the perfect platform for so many other nourishing foods. And when I’m encouraging people to try new foods (such as beans), I love to incorporate something familiar. Enter toast.
I know you and I know you love pizza.
You love it so much that you insist on ordering it at least once a week from your favorite pizza place. While that’s fine and good, it’s um, actually not. Many pizza places load on the heavy toppings and leave you feeling like you just ate a vat of oil topped with a salt lick. Yuck. Ok, well, maybe it tastes good at the time, but it can leave you feeling pretty gross. But don’t worry, I have a solution! My famous (or soon-to-be-famous) Easy Pizza Toasts.
Yes, pizza can be yours and it can taste good and leave you feeling awesome!
What’s the trick? There isn’t one! Yup, it really is easy. Let me explain. Start with some yummy whole wheat bread then slice it thinly. Cook up some yummy veggies (this toast I made with onions and squash) – hint, cut them up small so that they cook fast (this also makes them look super cute on your toasts). Spread a little marinara on top of those bread slices, top with a little cheese (a good, flavorful sharp cheddar is my favorite), then add the veggies. Slide them into the oven for about 10 minutes and you’ve got Easy Pizza Toasts!
So, no more heavy pizza for you (ok, have it every once in awhile), instead enjoy the crispy, crunchy, veggie-goodness of these Pizza Toasts!
Easy Pizza Toasts
Quickly sautéed veggies piled high on whole grain bread topped with cheddar cheese then toasted in the oven.
- 1/2 loaf, 15-ounce whole wheat baguette, cut into 1/2-inch thick slices on the bias
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 small onion (about 2 1/2 ounces), diced small
- 1/2 medium zucchini (about 5 ounces), diced small
- 1/2 medium yellow squash (about 5 ounces), diced small
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon oregano
- 1 cup canned or jarred marinara sauce
- 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
- 1/4 cup fresh basil, thinly sliced
- Preheat the oven to 400’F. Line a 9×13-inch sheet pan with parchment paper or foil.
- Heat the oil in a large pan set over medium heat. Add the onion and cook stirring often, until softened, about 5 minutes. (You may need to adjust the heat to prevent burning.) Stir in the zucchini, squash and salt and cook an additional 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the garlic and oregano and cook one more minute. Remove pan from the heat.
- Spread marinara sauce evenly over bread slices, then sprinkle with cheese. Top each slice with some of the squash mixture. Transfer pan to the oven and bake for 10 minutes or until bread is toasted and cheese has melted.
- Garnish with fresh basil before serving.
- This recipe makes 20 pizza toasts. A great appetizer or main dish!
- Serving Size: 5
- Calories: 476
- Sugar: 7
- Sodium: 1034
- Fat: 23
- Saturated Fat: 11
- Unsaturated Fat: 11
- Trans Fat: 0
- Carbohydrates: 50
- Protein: 20
- Cholesterol: 49