Grilled Asparagus Pesto Crostini with Crispy Prosciutto

Of all the spring vegetables, asparagus is by far my favorite. This time if year it’s perfect (and also cheaper, which is a great perk). It’s wonderful roasted or grilled and I absolutely love it wrapped in salty prosciutto.

This recipe takes grilled asparagus and combines it with the fresh flavors of lemon pesto. From there, I spread it (and a little garlic and herb Boursin cheese) on warm, crusty bread and finished it with a sprinkle of crispy prosciutto and just a touch of honey to balance the saltiness. The result is something magical. Wow your crowd by making this as an appetizer or make it a meal by pairing it with a big, leafy salad.

This recipe cost me $18.27 and took me 25 minutes to prepare.

1. Preheat oven to 350.
2. Place prosciutto on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or silpat and bake for 15 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, preheat a grill pan (or outdoor grill) to medium-high. Place asparagus in a bowl and drizzle with a small amount of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Cook for 2-3 minutes per side, or until grill marks form (you may have to work in batches). Transfer to a platter to allow to cool slightly, then dice.

4. Place diced asparagus, basil, garlic, Parmesan, pine nuts, lemon juice and olive oil in a blender. Process for 30 seconds, scraping down the sides as needed. Transfer pesto to a bowl and adjust seasonings as needed.

5. Place crispy prosciutto on paper towels to drain. Lay bread slices on the same sheet pan and bake for 5-10 minutes, or until slightly golden brown.

6. Spread a thin layer of Boursin cheese onto each bread slice and top with pesto. Sprinkle crispy prosciutto on top and drizzle with a touch of honey (be careful not to over do it). Serve.

Grilled Asparagus Pesto Crostini with Crispy Prosciutto 
Serves 8 (appetizer) or 4 (meal)

All you need:
6 slices prosciutto
1 pound asparagus, trimmed
1 cup (packed) fresh basil leaves
2 cloves garlic
1/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons pine nuts
Juice of 1 lemon
1/2 cup olive oil
8 slices French bread
2 oz. Boursin Garlic and Herb cheese
Honey, for drizzling
Salt and pepper, to taste

All you do:
1. Preheat oven to 350.
2. Place prosciutto on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or silpat and bake for 15 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, preheat a grill pan (or outdoor grill) to medium-high. Place asparagus in a bowl and drizzle with a small amount of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Cook for 2-3 minutes per side, or until grill marks form (you may have to work in batches). Transfer to a platter to allow to cool slightly, then dice.
4. Place diced asparagus, basil, garlic, Parmesan, pine nuts, lemon juice and olive oil in a blender. Process for 30 seconds, scraping down the sides as needed. Transfer pesto to a bowl and adjust seasonings as needed.
5. Place crispy prosciutto on paper towels to drain. Lay bread slices on the same sheet pan and bake for 5-10 minutes, or until slightly golden brown.
6. Spread a thin layer of Boursin cheese onto each bread slice and top with pesto. Sprinkle crispy prosciutto on top and drizzle with a touch of honey (be careful not to over do it).

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