Southern Living Festive Crostini

My friend recently requested more appetizer recipes, and I aim to please. Appetizers and I have a complicated relationship. Or maybe dysfunctional is the word I am looking for? Everyone loves appetizers — myself included — but as a hostess, I have to stop myself from yelling to guests, “ENOUGH! You will spoil your appetite!” I have also been the guest who has had trouble resisting the appetizers, only to have dinner roll around and quietly think, “Oy, I’m so full. I sure wish I didn’t have to eat more food right now.” But let’s assume you and your friends possess a healthy adult-level of self control. If that is the case, I highly recommend this recipe. And if it’s not the case? Well, you’ve been warned.

My friend Susie shared this recipe with me back in 1999, and I’ve been making it every year since. It is perfect for the holidays with its red and green color. There are certain old millennium aspects of this recipe (dried tomatoes, canned black olives) that I’ve modified, but feel free to stick to the original if you prefer. I usually make the cream cheese/feta mixture and the tomato/olive mixture ahead of time, but I am a little obsessive like that.

Festive Crostini, Southern Living, December 1999

Yield: 30 Appetizers


  • 1/2 (3-ounce) package dried tomatoes (I use jarred tomatoes, so if you do, skip the boiling water)
  • 1 1/2 cups boiling water
  • 1 (16-ounce) baguette, cut into1/2-inch-thick slices
  • 2 garlic cloves, divided
  • 1/2 (8-ounce) package fat-free cream cheese, softened (fat-free? NEVER!)
  • 1 (4-ounce) package crumbled feta cheese
  • 1 (2.5-ounce) can sliced ripe olives, drained (I use sliced Kalamata olives)
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley


Soak tomatoes in 1 1/2 cups boiling water 30 minutes; drain. Chop tomatoes, and set aside. (You can also use jarred sun dried tomatoes, well drained.)

Place bread on a baking sheet.

Bake at 400° for 10 to 12 minutes or until toasted.

Cut 1 garlic clove in half. Rub bread slices evenly with cut side of garlic.

Stir together cream cheese and feta cheese until well blended. Spread about 1 teaspoon cream cheese mixture evenly on each bread slice.

Mince remaining garlic clove. Stir together minced garlic, tomato, olives, and parsley. Spoon over cream cheese mixture.


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