Cali Mess Crostini

The other day at work, as my head fell forward and jerked me momentarily into the realm of the living, i wiped the drool from my chin and deleted the 65,000 L's I had accidentally typed while my finger lay heavy on the keyboard during my surprise boredom nap, and was suddenly overcome with an urge to eat many things at once, as I usually am when I wake up. I couldn't pinpoint a happy medium between all of my cravings though! I wanted something salty, but fatty, and acidic, but fresh, and crispy, but mainly filling. What I came up with was just throwing all of that into a bowl and putting it on bread. I thought about it all day at work, and rushed out at like 2PM to go food shopping, unable to sit at my desk any longer. Ingredients in hand, I rushed home and things got messy. Lots of huffy inhaling and sloppy mouth-open chewing happened. Let's just say that all of the ingredients I had just bought were in my stomach by 3PM. I had to go out the next day and buy everything again just so I'd be able to take a picture of the end product................ 

................ Anyone who lives in California knows that making something "California-style" actually just means putting some french fries in it, to the rest of the world, Cali style means something more like putting an avocado in it. These crostini have avocado, and I was a total mess when I was making and devouring them basically simultaneously, so I decided to call them Cali Mess Crostini. And the certainly look like a mess, but the flavors are fairly sophisticated. Lemon oil drizzled on the bread before crisping it up under the broiler adds a nice freshness to cut the fattiness of the cheese and avocado. Tomatoes and red onion add an astringent brightness, and a splash of balsamic paired with heavy seasoning gives the topping nice, full-bodied background notes. The topping is mushy enough that it doesn't off of the crostini as you bite into it, and the crostini itself provides a great crunch in the mouth. For me, they are one bite wonders, but I might advise multiple bites to any less experienced eaters out there.

Butter Count: 1 avocado (the butter of the fruit world)


1 avocado, chopped

2 Tbsp red onion, chopped

1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, halved

1 cup Mozzarella pearls, halved or whole

8 large fresh basil leaves, chiffonade

splash of Balsamic vinegar

Lemon-infused olive oil for drizzling

4-5 gluten-free bread slices

1 Tbsp grated Parmesan cheese per crostini




1. Add the first 6 ingredients too a bowl. Season heavily with salt and pepper to taste.

2. Using a 2-inch cookie cutter, cut circles out of the bread, or leave whole for larger crostini.

3. Drizzle the bread with lemon infused olive oil on both sides. 

4. Cook the bread under a broiler, about 2 minutes per side, until each side is golden brown and crispy.

5. Pile the topping mixture onto the crostini as high as it will go.

6. Sprinkle the grated Parmesan cheese evenly over all of the crostini.