Ahh it’s SO CLOSE TO Christmas! I already opened half my presents which is what happens when the bf is leaving to Oregon and I’m leaving to New York. We could open our gifts when we get back after Christmas but….who does that when they are just sitting under your tree, taunting you mercilessly every day. And I did want to wear this dress in New York anyways.

 

Christmas Crostini

Christmas Crostini

 

For Christmas me, my mom and my youngest sister love cooking dinner together and almost every year the first course is crostini. We have made truffled ricotta and honey crostini, goat cheese and grape crostinis, and this year I’m thinking of these babies: sheep’s milk fete, persimmon and pomegranate crostini with speck and chestnut honey!

 

Christmas Crostini

Christmas Crostini

 

The best part about this recipe is that it is pretty flexible. I used feta but you can also use another mild or mild and slightly salty cheese like fresh mozzarella, burrata, goat cheese and halloumi (grilled) to name a few. And the bread. Well if you have eagle eyes you can spot that I used just plain old Ezekiel bread here. I was whipping this up for lunch with a side salad and it is what I had at home. I think some crust demi-miche or perhaps a hearty rosemary focaccia would be beyond lovely here.

 

Christmas Crostini

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Christmas Crostini

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Christmas Crostini

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RECIPE:

CHRISTMAS CROSTINI
Makes 4-6 pieces

INGREDIENTS:

  • bread (whatever you want really, preferably on the crustier side)
  • olive oil
  • 1/2 pound sheep’s milk feta, burrata, fresh mozzarella, chevre, halloumi, or other mild cheese.
  • 3 persimmons
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 pomegranate
  • chestnut honey
  • speck or prosciutto (optional)

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Heat saute pan to medium-low heat.
  2. Thinly slice persimmons. Coat both sides with brown sugar. Add olive oil to the pan and then add persimmons, cooking them on both sides until the brown sugar is caramelized and the persimmon is soft.
  3. Slice bread into 1/2 – 1 inch slices and brush on both sides with olive oil. Toast on a grill pan or panini press until toasted and properly stripe-y.
  4. Once bread is toasted, top generously with cheese, then persimmons, then speck or prosciutto (if using), and lastly pomegranate seeds and honey.
    All done.

 

Christmas Crostini

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Christmas Crostini

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Christmas Crostini

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Christmas Crostini

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Christmas Crostini

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The creamy and salty cheese contrasts with the jammy, sticky sweet persimmon and when you add silky prosciutto and the bursts of tartness from the pomegranate seeds. Yum. And so easy to throw together. Crostini is one of those things that you often see at restaurants and it always sounds nice but so many times I refrain from ordering because I too have the (meager) culinary skills necessary to place bucheron cheese with green apple and some apricot jam on bread…Ok I should probably zoom out now.

 

Christmas Crostini

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Christmas Crostini

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Christmas Crostini

Christmas Crostini

 

In short its super easy and right now I’m thinking maybe some brie cheese would be quite nice in this too? I mean when it comes to cheese, just FOLLOW YOUR HEART (iluvucheez).

 

Christmas Crostini

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Soo we go here quite frequently, proximity is a huge factor but the tortas and breakfast are equally important variables. Our previous post covers Taco Tuesdays at Barrio Star but in our opinion, brunch is where its at. Sorry no tortas this brunch but I’m sure that will turn up sometime.

 

Barrio Star

Barrio Star – Brunch

 

DRINKS: So first of all, they didn’t have a Bloody Mary on their menu! I was beyond shocked. But if you ask nicely they will make you one no problem. This was pretty good.

 

Barrio Star

Interior

Barrio Star

Menu

Barrio Star

Bloody Mary

 

ENTREES: Ok let me preface this with the information that the bf is a complete 100% carnivore. A meal is not a meal without meat. He does not like tofu, Meatless Mondays would never be a thing at our household and if its up to him he will always order the steak at restaurants. Ok now that the groundwork is established: this is one of his favorite breakfast dishes and it is entirely vvveeegggeeetttaaarrriiiaannnn! Even snacks have meat with this boy (Korean BBQ Jerky from Costco and tuna salad on BBQ chips) so this is notable.

 

The Avocado Scramble is scrambled eggs with avocado and cheese and it comes with tortillas, black beans and these super crispy rosemary potatoes with jalapenos. He actually does not love the super crispy potato bits so I normally scavenge them off his plate like a potato vulture. The dish is also tasty and a very generous portion. They add A LOT of cheese to the scrambled eggs and its always entirely melty and deliciousss. We often try to make this at home because we literally have all these ingredients in our fridge all the time but the eggs never turn out the same! Barrio Star tell me your scramble secrets plz.

 

Avocado Scramble

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Avocado Scramble

So crispy.

Avocado Scramble

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I get the Power Breakfast which is brown rice, scrambled egg whites, and steamed greens. Which sounds incredible boring, I know. But it’s not because you add this amazing salsa that to me tastes like a mixture of tomatillo salsa and pesto. It is magical and it brings everything together. And ok I also normally add carnitas or chicken to it but this time they forgot it and I got it after. That’s one problem they seem to have is not so great service. Everyone is friendly but it can be a struggle to get your water re-filled, add-ons or omissions are forgotten, food can take a while…etc. This time they actually brought me a Power Burrito instead of the Power Bowl, and then finally brought out the Power Bowl without the chicken. Eek. Eventually I did get chicken but was already nearly done with my Power Bowl. Not entirely their fault as I am a ridiculously fast eater. In the end they didn’t charge me for the chicken.

 

Power Breakfast

Power Breakfast

Power Breakfast

Power Breakfast

 

Adding on meat like chicken, steak or carnitas can be a bit pricy ($5 dollas). But it is really good meat and a large portion. How good does this chicken look amiright:

 

Barrio Star

Chikin.

 

I almost wish they had a half portion. I do this weird thing where I ration out the different components in my dish because I want every bite to have everything and I always have leftover meat here. And then I take it home and never eat it because I suck at eating leftovers.

 

Barrio Star

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All in all this is a good standby that we normally drop in on weekends for breakfast. It is definitely not traditional Mexican and its a little pricy but I personally like the ‘healthy’ twist on Mexican food with brown rice, no lard, steamed greens, etc. Don’t get me wrong I love a huge platter of cheese-topped refried beans but there is a time and place for everything (we go to Ponce’s or Tony’s Jacal for that) and its nice to be able to eat Mexican food that doesn’t leave you half comatose. On weekends I usually allocate all my comatoseness for my ultimate kryptonite: late night pizza or bacon cheeseburgers. So yup, understandable that come 10 am I want some brown rice and kale to offset 2 am pepperoni grease and American cheese.

 

CHECK:
Bloody Mary $8
Avocado Scramble $9.50
Power Breakfast $9.00
Chicken $5.00
TOTAL (w/ tax) $34.02

 

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