Last evening, I prepared sweet potato and leek soup; I also whipped up a batch of crostini with spicy pork and red radish, to be exact. Before I start elaborating on the recipe, let me share some stuff about crostini and bruschetta.
Their difference lies in the thickness and size. While the bruschetta is usually wide and thick, the crostini is a petite, thinner version; and that’s about it. Both can be served plain, toasted with a spread of olive oil/butter with a few minced herbs or garlic, or topped with various types of toppings.
When I think of crostini, I think of light and simple toppings. At first, wanted to make a sweet potato mash with minced herbs and garlic prawn to go with the dainty pieces of toasted baguette slices. Still, I decided on something else since I had already made soup using the sweet potato. I’ve always believed in a balanced meal; the soup was already loaded with carbs and fibre. The one still missing element was protein. So I whipped up a minced meat topping and my crostini with spicy pork garnished with thin slices of red radish and spring onions were ready.
Preparing the crostini and radish slices
When the spicy mince was done, I prepared the crostini slices. I usually buy those frozen. Whenever I need a baguette loaf, I’ll take it out of the freezer, let it thaw at room temperature, and then bake it until it’s nice and golden. One trick I learned to get a crispy crust is to sprinkle droplets of water around the loaf in the baking tray. It somehow helps to crisp the crust up during the baking.
I sliced a loaf into small and thin discs using a bread knife. I brushed some olive oil on one side of each slice and popped the lot in the oven to toast for about 15 minutes. The slices were super crispy and gave a delightful crunch upon the first bite.
Then, I prepared red radish slices and some thinly sliced spring onion. I used a mandoline to slice the red radish thinly, but you can use a knife if you don’t have one. A mandoline is a handy tool for slicing, cutting, shredding and grating vegetables and cheese. It sure eases the time needed to prepare food using those methods.
I sliced the spring onion/scallion slant-wise for extra garnish. I figured it’d add a nice touch to the whole ensemble since it’s an Asian-themed crostini. Spring onion/scallion is such a norm in Asian dishes.
Meat topping done, garnishes done, crostini slices done, and all that was left was to assemble the dish.
How to assemble the crostini with spicy pork
- Place a crostini oiled/buttered side up
- Spread some spicy minced pork on it evenly
- Place a slice of red radish on top of the meat
- Top it all off with a few pieces of sliced spring onion/scallion
And voila! Crostini with spicy pork mince and red radish, done!
Crostini With Spicy Pork & Red Radish
- 1.2 lb ground pork (minced pork)
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 3 green onions (scallions or green shallots) - thinly sliced
- 1 garlic bulb - minced
- 1 tbsp oyster sauce
- 2 tbsp lemongrass - finely chopped
- 2 tbsp spring onions - thinly sliced
- In a pan, heat some olive oil
- Saute shallots, garlic, ginger torch bud and lemongrass until fragrant
- Add in minced pork, and stir well for about 2-3 minutes or until the pork is cooked
- Add in chilli ginger sauce, gauge the amount
- Add in Shaohsing/cooking rice wine and oyster sauce
- Taste as you cook
- Stir well until the mixture is slightly dry but not entirely
- Take it off the heat and set it aside to cool
- Preheat the oven to 200°Celcius
- Brush some olive oil on one side of each baguette slice
- Pop in the oven to toast for about 15-20 minutes or until golden and crisp
- Once done, take it out of the oven
- To assemble the crostini, please refer to the instructions above
- Serve, and enjoy