ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Mascarpone Crostini with Basil and Roasted Sweet Peppers

Updated on June 28, 2009

More Crostini Ideas

Sandwiches are my favorite kind of food, my dessert island, last meal on earth choice for sustenance, but if I had to pick a close second I would stay pretty true to my leavened ideals and choose crostini (open faced sandwiches) as my alternate stand in selection.

Crostini are breads covered with toppings that are hearty enough for a light lunch, or if cut more delicately, perfect for a before dinner nibble or appetizer.

Crostini are only as good as the bread that supports them and so for this recipe I heartily recommend searching out a quality white sourdough with a depth of tang. It is worth it – and a good loaf of sourdough will last for a week on the counter, enjoyable all the while (try that with a sad loaf of supermarket imitation ”French or Italian bread” that are all but inedible after a day or so!

Mascarpone Crostini with Basil and Roasted Sweet Peppers

This here is a beauty – the sweetness of the roasted peppers counterbalances the sour of the sourdough and the basil infused mascarpone lends a rich undertone of flavor. This tastes like summer on a plate!

  • Four good sized slices of sourdough (day old or longer is perfect) grilled until slightly toasted on a BBQ, or if necessary, under a broiler. The BBQ grilled bread is definitely superior, with the mottled variations in tastes, ranging from the almost blackened section to the toasty brown to the still white makes for a much more interesting taste sensation.
  • Extra virgin olive oil for drizzling
  • A little balsamic vinegar for drizzling
  • About 1/2 cup of mascarpone cheese (or substitute ricotta cheese, for a leaner option)
  • A handful of fresh basil – about 15 basil leaves (don’t make this with dried basil…just don’t), julienned (cut into narrow ribbons)
  • 3 or 4 sweet red peppers, blackened, peeled and cut into 1 inch slices (for instructions on how to peel a pepper, see below)
  • Sea salt

Smear enough mascarpone or ricotta across each slice of toasted bread to cover almost completely

Cover each slice of cheese topped bread with enough strips of roasted pepper to cover the cheese almost completely (leave a little of the creamy white showing through though, it looks so nice…)

Top with peppers with a generous sprinkling of the freshly julienne cut basil

Drizzle a generous amount of extra virgin olive oil over each slice of bread (you will want to use about ¼ cup in total) and follow with a slightly scanter drizzle of balsamic (say about 1/8 of a cup in total)

Sprinkle generously with sea salt (you can of course use regular salt here, but the crunch of a fleur de sell sea salt adds an interesting dimension.)


How to Blacken and Peel Peppers (Roasting peppers)

To peel peppers you must first blacken the skin, and there are a number of ways to do this.

  • If you have a gas hob you can simply crank the gas, and using tongs, hold the pepper over the flames until the skin has all blistered and blackened
  • You can place the peppers on a very hot BBQ, and turn them until they have blistered and blackened all over
  • You can place them under a hot broiler, turning them occasionally, until they have blackened and blistered
  • You can buy a chef’s blowtorch, and quickly flame them blackened. (this one is the most fun!)

You may feel like you are burning the peppers when you see them turning black, but you are in fact only burning the skin, which will be removed, and in heating the skin, you sweeten the flesh inside immeasurably.

Once you have blackened the peppers all over, put them into a paper or plastic bag and close it tightly, and let the peppers cool for a few minutes. This steams the peppers and makes the skin easier to loosen. When the peppers are cool enough to handle, use a spoon to scrape off the blackened skin, and then cut as directed.

You may be tempted to hold the peppers under running water to rinse of any remaining little blackened bits. DO NOT DO THIS! By rinsing the flesh you will wash away lots of tasty stuff.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • Gypsy Willow profile image

      Gypsy Willow 

      9 years ago from Lake Tahoe Nevada USA , Wales UK and Taupo New Zealand

      Yum yum!

    • John D Lee profile imageAUTHOR

      John D Lee 

      9 years ago

      Hi Irohner, Roasted jarred peppers are one of the few canned foods that taste pretty much as good as the homemade version - Feel no shame in this timesaving step!

      Thanks for the comment

    • lrohner profile image


      9 years ago from USA

      Delicious! I actually make this dish quite often, but I take the easy way out and use roasted peppers from the jar. :(


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)