I find that appetizers tend to fall in one of two camps. On the one side, there are the myriad mayonnaise- and cheese-loaded dips that taste delicious but leave you with the sinking suspicion that you just ate a day’s worth of calories. On the other side, you have to healthy choices like crudités with yogurt dip—definitely lower in calories but also lower in fun.
Like everything in life, I find the middle ground to be the happiest place. I want to be drawn to that appetizer table and itch to go back for seconds while knowing that not only will my mouth be pleased, but my body will benefit. This crostini is heavy on the veg but with the crisp, garlicky toast and the bit of sharp melted cheese, it feels indulgent. Bring this to your next soiree and you’ll steal the show.
Mushroom, Arugula and Parmesan Crostini
Makes 18 crostini; serves six as an appetizer
½ a whole-wheat baguette (18 thin slices)
1 clove garlic,
1 tbsp. olive oil
10 oz. white mushrooms, stemmed and finely chopped
¼ tsp. salt
3 c. (packed) baby arugula, chopped
¼ tsp. garlic powder
¼ tsp. black pepper
2 oz. Parmesan cheese, thinly sliced into 18 slices
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray baguette slices on one side with olive oil and place on rimmed baking sheet.
2. Bake for 8-10 minutes and remove from oven. Slice garlic clove in half and rub cut side on each slice. Crostini can be made up to two days ahead and stored in an airtight container at room temperature.
3. Heat olive oil in nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms and salt. Sauté until mushrooms release water, water evaporates and mushrooms begin to turn golden.
4. Add arugula and stir until mostly wilted.
5. Stir in garlic powder and black pepper.
6. Scoop mushroom/arugula mixture onto prepared crostini and top with cheese. Place on baking sheet.
7. Preheat broiler and set oven rack to highest position. Broil for two minutes or until cheese is melted. Best served hot but can be served within several hours.
Per serving (three crostini): 341 calories, 6.3 fat grams (including 2.2 grams saturated fat), 7 milligrams cholesterol, 814 milligrams sodium, 313 milligrams potassium, 56 milligrams carbs, 3 grams fiber, 16.1 grams protein.