• Ingredients: 32
  • Serves: 4

Rick’s basic crostini with garlic cloves, pinch of kosher salt, high-quality salted butter, softened, fresh lemon juice, cracked black pepper, eight 1/4-inch-thick slices baguette.



  • 3/4 lb. dried porcini mushrooms, roughly chopped
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 2 cups olive oil
  • 1 lb. bulk hot Italian sausage
  • 1 pound pork butt, cut into 1-inch pcs.
  • 1 pound beef chuck, cut into 1-inch pcs.
  • Kosher salt and cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 lb. Spanish onions, cut into 1-inch dice
  • 1 1/2 tbsps. minced garlic
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • Two 14-ounce cans Italian plum tomatoes, roughly chopped, juice reserved
  • 1/2 cup roughly chopped fresh basil
  • 1 tbsp. dried oregano
  • 1 tsp. freshly ground fennel seed
  • 1 bay leaf


  • 2 cups chicken stock or water
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup yellow polenta or cornmeal
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, plus more for serving
  • 2 tbsps. unsalted butter
  • Torn fresh basil
  • Chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

To serve

  • Lemongrass Consomm&eacute , warm
  • 1/4 cup fresh Italian parsley, chopped


  • 1 medium bunch fresh basil, stems removed

To serve:

  • Special equipment: 2 large baking sheets; parchment paper; aluminum foil


  1. Step 1 1. On a cutting board, finely chop the garlic and sprinkle the salt over it. Keep chopping and smashing the garlic and salt together to make a paste.

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  2. Step 2 Use a wide-bladed knife so you can smear the paste along its flat side. You can also do this with a mortar and pestle.
  3. Step 3 2. In a small bowl, mix the butter, lemon juice, and garlic paste. Fold the softened butter over and onto the garlic mixture, mashing it down with the back of a spoon or spatula.

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  4. Step 4 3. Lay a sheet of plastic wrap on a work surface. Scrape the butter onto the plastic and use the plastic wrap to shape butter into a log, encased in the plastic wrap.

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  5. Step 5 Refrigerate until ready to use. If not using within 3 days, you can freeze the garlic butter for up to 2 months.

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  6. Step 6 5. Lay the bread on a baking sheet and brush both sides with garlic butter. Bake for 6 to 7 minutes, turning once, until golden brown but not too crispy.

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Good Butter

  1. Step 7 The difference between really good butter and all other butter lies with the butterfat content of the cream, which depends in large part on the cows and how the cream is handled before it is churned into butter.

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  2. Step 8 The best butter from Europe is made from raw or cultured cream and, particularly that made from raw cream, might not be imported to the United States.

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  3. Step 9 But never fear: At American companies such as the Vermont Butter & Cheese Company, the butter is made from high-grade cream (a high butterfat content) that is cultured and then churned.

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  4. Step 10 The butter is rich and flavorful and when it’s salted, its salt content is significantly lower than typical salted butter.

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  5. Step 11 This is what I use in my crostini recipes, so depending on the salted butter you choose, you may not need to add any salt.

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  6. Step 12 As with all ingredients for these recipes, choose the best butter you can. It pays off in terms of taste.

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Nutrition information

Calories 265 Carbohydrates 12 g (4%)
Fat 23 g (36%) Protein 3 g (5%)
Saturated Fat 15 g (73%) Sodium 343 mg (14%)
Polyunsaturated Fat 1 g Fiber 1 g (2%)
Monounsaturated Fat 6 g Cholesterol 61 mg (20%)