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"Two-Pump" Crostini

This image courtesy of Joseph DeLeo

You know what's fancy? Pumpernickel. You know what's cool? Wordplay. With these pumpernickel (the bitter component) and pumpkin butter (the cream and sugar component) crostini, you can be both fancy and cool all night. Oh yeah, and as a bonus, you get to make your own butter. You don't even need a churn or an old lady to get it done. See, once upon a time I somehow ended up with a cookbook called Another Blue Strawberry, by James Haller. It was about cooking without recipes, and if memory serves, one of the first nonrecipes is about making butter. Adding pumpkin pie flling makes this taste just like the butter at Texas Roadhouse, the restaurant chain oddly based in Kentucky, which is delicious and addictive. Now that you know that you can combine canned pie flling with homemade butter, I fully expect you to put cherry butter (same technique but with cherry pie filling) on chocolate chip pancakes.

NotesTip: For the biggest impact, use organic or farmer's market cream.

Makes1 quart butter and as many crostini as you like

Preparation Time5 min

Preparation Time - Text5 minutes

Cooking Time15 min

Cooking Time - Text15

CostInexpensive

Easy

Total Timeunder 30 minutes

Make Ahead RecipeYes

Kid FriendlyYes

One Pot MealYes

OccasionCasual Dinner Party, Cocktail Party, Family Get-together, Formal Dinner Party

Recipe Courseappetizer, hors d'oeuvre

Dietary Considerationhalal, kosher, peanut free, soy free, vegetarian

Equipmentelectric mixer

Five Ingredients or LessYes

Taste and Texturecreamy, spiced, sweet

Type of Dishcanape/crostini

Ingredients

  • Stand mixer with whisk attachment
  • Colander
  • Large bowl
  • 1 quart heavy cream (see Notes)
  • One 15-ounce can pumpkin pie filling
  • 1 1?2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • Pumpernickel bread, sliced  "Sandwich Style" (not that hard stuff for people who need fiber)
  • Olive oil
  • Sheet pan

Instructions

  1. Make the butter:

  2. Add the cream to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. If you have a splash guard, use it; otherwise you can drape the edge of the bowl with plastic wrap. Start the mixer on the slowest speed, then gradually increase the speed to the highest setting. Whisk the cream until peppercorn-size or larger bits of butter are floating in the milk, about 5 minutes.

  3. Line a colander with a clean dish towel and place it over a large mixing bowl. Pour the contents of the mixer bowl into the colander. Reserve the milk for drinking because it's rad. Place the butter back in the bowl of the stand mixer. Add the pumpkin pie filling and salt and mix until combined, about 1 minute.

  4. HOLD IT? Store the pumpkin butter in a covered container in the fridge until ready to use; it will keep for up to a week, or can be frozen for up to a month. You can also cut your bread ahead of time and store in an airtight container, ready to brush and toast (see next step).

  5. PLATE IT! Preheat the oven to 350°F. Cut your bread into whatever shape you like. Drizzle or lightly brush the bread with olive oil on both sides. Place in a single layer on a sheet pan and bake, flipping once halfway through the baking, until crispy, 6 to 10 minutes.

  6. Allow the bread to cool slightly so the butter doesn't melt everywhere. Place a chilled rosette of butter on each piece of bread, or simply smear heavily with the pumpkin butter. Serve.

  7. CHEAT IT! If you don't have the time or energy to make your own butter, you can always replace the homemade butter with store-bought softened unsalted butter and mix it with the pumpkin pie filling and salt per above.

  8. BREAK IT: Some curry heat (1 to 2 tablespoons of curry powder) added to the mix would take this over the top.

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