Warm Bocconcini, Fennel and Lemon Crostini

, from Issue #45. August, 2015
Photography by Manja Wachsmuth.
Warm Bocconcini, Fennel and Lemon Crostini

I would happily eat a larger serving of these crostini with a crisp salad for lunch or a light dinner any night of the week. These small versions are perfect with a chilled glass of wine.


2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large fennel bulb, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
sea salt and freshly ground pepper

2 lemons, sliced ½ cm thick, pips removed
1/3 cup icing sugar
½ teaspoon ground paprika
2 tablespoons olive oil

To assemble
12 x 1 cm thick slices baguette, toasted
3 tablespoons basil pesto or tapenade
3-4 bocconcini, each sliced into 3-4 rounds (I used Clevedon Valley Buffalo)


Preheat the grill to its highest setting.

Fennel: Heat the oil in a sauté pan, then add the fennel and garlic and season well. Cover and cook over a medium heat until the fennel is very tender, stirring occasionally. Cool.

Lemons: Sift the combined icing sugar and paprika onto a large plate. Coat both sides of the lemons in the sugar. Heat the oil in a sauté pan and cook the lemons for a few minutes over a medium heat until the sugar has caramelised and the lemons are golden and tender. Transfer to a plate.

To assemble: Spread each toast with pesto or tapenade and top with a spoonful of fennel then a slice of bocconcini.

Arrange on a flat oven tray and place under the grill for about 1 minute or until the bocconcini is just warmed through and still holding its shape. Halve or quarter the glazed lemons and place a couple of pieces on each crostini. Grind over a little pepper and a pinch of sea salt and serve immediately. Makes 12 crostini

Pantry note: Good quality pesto and tapenades are available in supermarkets and food stores