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Lardo, pear, blue cheese and honey crostoni with sourdough bread

A crust of bread and a glass of wine gathered around a Tuscan country table ten traveller friends in a mad spring day, enlightened by a warm sun and made vivacious by an unexpected downpour. The official excuse? An unusual flavour match.

I just noticed it, within less than a week I stepped from celebrating the good aspects of an alone meal, spent listening to your thoughts, to the celebration of a lunch with friends as the perfect time of aggregation, fun and good food.

 

I have been asked to produce a savoury recipe that could be a perfect match with a passito wine “La Bella Estate” Terredavino. So, sweet wine – savoury food. Oh well…

Blank expression. To get the right match of wine and food for me is like guessing the right combination of the lottery numbers. Even though you just need good luck with the lottery, with the combination of wine and food it’s enough to have a sommelier friend who loves to experiment and has in mind a complete table of scents and flavours combinations, and you’re done.

Add friends who love to interpret each recipe and you have also your favourite models for the photos. Undress yourself, it’s time to shoot the wine… I am not talking about X rated pictures, I just preferred a black t-shirt to a yellow sweatshirt as a background for the sweet wine glass!

The idea of the dish is simple, it comes from the need to let understand intuitively the wine, without too much thinking, using ingredients that naturally go well together.

The bread, the base of the crostone, is the result of another day of studying spent trying to become familiar with my sourdough. It’s a rustic breadloaf made with wholewheat flour with a soft and moist inner part, perfect to be toasted in the oven.

The lardo di Colonnata – cut into paper thin slices, melts with desire at the first contact with the warm crusty bread, releasing its sweetness.

Do not peel the pear, as the beautiful rusty peel will draw a nice classic pear shape over the bread, while the pulp, grainy and sweet-tart, will be a perfect complement to the sweet gorgonzola.

The gorgonzola, an Italian blue cheese, is the central pairing to the sweet wine and a drizzle of chestnut honey will gently glaze the crostone, not too sweet to break the balance of the dish.

I am neither an expert nor a wine lover, but the pairing highlighted the flavours and was so right that made me say: may I have another drop of wine, I have a few bites to go!

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Lardo, pear, blue cheese and honey crostoni with sourdough bread

Author Giulia

Ingredients

  • wholeflour sourdough bread
  • Kaiser pears, thinly sliced
  • lardo, paper thin sliced
  • sweet gorgonzola, or any other blue cheese
  • chestnut honey

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 200°C.
  • Allow two thick sourdough bread slices per person and toast them in the oven with the grill function on a pan for a few minutes until golden and crisp: toasting it first will reduce the baking time later, preserving the pear juiciness.
  • Arrange two lardo slices on each toasted bread slice to cover the whole surface, then top the lardo with a slice of pear, eventually crumble some blue cheese over the pear.
  • Bake for a minute or two, until the gorgonzola melts, then remove the crostoni from the oven and serve them immediately drizzled with the chestnut honey.
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