It’s a busy time of year at the Howe Bed and Breakfast. Late-season snow and spring break schedules mean many guests, which we love. This weekend, we hosted dear friends from Brooklyn for a weekend of skiing in the sunshine and a birthday celebration. I stayed off of the slopes, still recuperating from a fall on ice a couple of weeks ago, and hiked with Cholula instead. After long days on the mountain, we would all reconvene for happy hour, parched and hungry. I love a good après ski situation!
In Ojai, the Fab Five stopped into a lovely shop with olive oil tastings. As with wine tasting, I’m always intrigued and surprised by the different flavors. I brought home a small bottle of chive oil, which the shop owner suggested drizzling over soft goat cheese and serving with a baguette. For one of our post-ski happy hours, I took inspiration from her suggestion and created these tasty little edamame-chive toasts with ricotta and goat cheese. YUM.
Instead of using a toaster, I started by charring some ciabatta bread slices on the indoor grill. I brushed each toasty piece with plenty of the subtly-flavored chive oil.
In a small bowl, I combined equal parts softened goat cheese and ricotta cheese. I stirred a little dollop of chive oil in there, as well. I thawed some frozen shelled edamame and gave it a quick whirrrr in the food processor, though not enough to puree it. In another small bowl, I combined the chopped edamame, salt, pepper, crushed red pepper, the zest of a lemon, and some lemon juice. I also stirred in plenty of chopped basil and parsley. (If I’d had any chives on hand, that would have been even better!)
To assemble, I smeared some of the ricotta-goat cheese on a piece of oiled toast. Then I spooned some of the edamame mixture over it. I drizzled still more chive oil lightly over the toasts, added a teeny bit of salt and some cracked black pepper, and finished them off by sprinkling a little more parsley on top. Beautiful!
The edamame-chive toasts were a scrumptious addition to our happy hour spread and were another reminder that sometimes the simplest recipe tastes the best. The toasts are versatile: any herbed oil would work, and sweet peas or cherry tomatoes would be a delicious substitute for the edamame. The brightness of the lemon makes these toasts taste like springtime, but they’re also a perfect way to end a day in the snow.
Cheers to fabulous friends, delicious food, and beautiful snow days!
Edamame-Chive Toasts with Ricotta and Goat Cheese
- 8 slices of ciabatta bread
- Chive olive oil (or other herbed olive oil)
- 4 ounces goat cheese at room temperature
- 4 ounces ricotta cheese
- 1 ½ cups frozen shelled edamame, thawed
- Zest of one lemon
- 1-2 tablespoons lemon juice, according to taste
- Heaping tablespoon chopped basil
- Heaping tablespoon chopped parsley, plus some for garnish
- Salt and pepper
- Crushed red pepper
Char the bread on both sides on a grill. Brush one side of the charred bread with the chive oil. In a small bowl, combine the goat cheese and ricotta with a dollop of chive oil.
In a small food processor, pulse the edamame a few times so it’s chopped but not pureed. Add it to a bowl with the lemon zest, lemon juice, a drizzle of chive oil, a pinch of salt and pepper, and red pepper flakes to taste. Stir in the fresh herbs (reserving a little bit of parsley for garnish).
On each piece of oiled toast, smear some of the cheese mixture and then spoon some of the edamame mixture on top. Drizzle lightly with more oil and top with fresh cracked pepper and sprinkle with parsley. Serve for après ski happy hour. YUM.
Hungry for more? Check out the collection of recipes on the FOOD BLISS page.
The New 52: A new recipe for each week of 2015.
More on how we entertain.
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