One thing I love about living in California is the access we have to awesome, locally grown food. San Luis Obispo itself has 4 (four!) farmer’s markets every single week. And the things we don’t get in this town can almost always be found somewhere else in California.
All this access to awesome, local foods helps me eat healthier. I’ve found that I follow a Mediterranean style diet (not like I’m on a diet, but the kinds of food I eat) pretty closely, except for the fact that I don’t eat fish. A Mediterranean diet usually focuses on consuming more plant-based foods, limiting salt intake, and reducing red meat consumption.
Eating more olives is a really healthy and flavorful way to start enjoying a more Mediterranean style diet. I feel like olives aren’t usually high on peoples’ radar for delicious and versatile food but they really do go with so many different dishes, especially black olives.
My very favorite are California black ripe plives, and they’re the only kind I’ll buy in the store. The beauty of these little guys is that they come in cans and are available nation-wide! So you can have awesome California produce wherever you are. They have a really great texture and can boost the nutrition of your meals.
They contain vitamin E, iron, vitamin A, and fiber and are packaged at their peak to preserve nutrients for year-round enjoyment.
To make these, all you have to do is find yourself a good, sturdy baguette (whole grain is best!) and slice at a 45° angle. Then spread some goat cheese onto the slices and top with the olives, red pepper, and pine nuts. Bake for about 7 minutes, sprinkle with herbs and olive oil, and serve.
These would be really perfect at any summer BBQ, or fall and winter parties as the perfect holiday finger food.
You can play around with the bread you choose to use, but I do adore a crusty bread with a fluffy interior. Double up on briny olive power by using this recipe for olive oregano bread!
What are your favorite ways to eat olives?
I LOVE them in pasta sauce – if you haven’t tried this then do yourself a favor and try it this week. I also love them on pizza, in pasta salads, in dips, and in burritos and tacos. So many things!
If you want to raise the intensity of the flavors of this crostini, first roast the olives with garlic and fresh herbs!Print
This Olive, Red Pepper, and Goat Cheese Crostini is a perfect appetizer any time of year.
- 1/2 cup sliced black ripe olives, drained
- 1/2 cup sliced roasted red peppers
- 3 Tbsp pine nuts
- 1/4 cup basil leaves
- 2–3 sprigs thyme
- 1 large baguette
- basil olive oil or regular extra virgin olive oil
- Heat your oven or large convection toaster oven to 400°F.
- Roughly chop the red pepper slices and julienne the basil leaves. Using a high quality bread knife, slice the baguette on a 45° diagonal into 1/2″ slices.
- Spread a bit of goat cheese onto the slices of bread, then top with a few olives and some shopped red pepper. Top with a few pine nuts. Place on a baking sheet and repeat until all the bread is used.
- Bake for about 7 minutes, until the bread is just starting to turn golden on the edges.
- Top the baked crostini with some julienned basil, a few leaves of thyme, and a drizzle of basil olive oil. Serve and eat immediately.
- Prep Time: 10 mins
- Cook Time: 7 mins
- Category: Lunch
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: Italian
Keywords: crostini, black olives, red pepper, goat cheese, pine nuts, baguette
What about you? Do you love black olives? What do you like to put them on? Let us know in the comments below and if you loved this, please give it a rating!
If this crostini recipe tickled your tummy, then these variations will also float your boat:
Photos by Raquel Smith, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details. Originally published on July 30th, 2015. Last updated: December 13, 2022 at 14:03 pm.
Nutritional information derived from a database of known generic and branded foods and ingredients and was not compiled by a registered dietitian or submitted for lab testing. It should be viewed as an approximation.
About Raquel Smith
Raquel is a whole foods enthusiast, an avid mountain biker, and a dog lover. She works by day at Food Blogger Pro and formerly maintained her food blog "My California Roots" (now merged into Foodal).