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When it comes to dismissing contestants on Food Network's hit series Chopped, Ted Allen is kind but cutting. "Chef, you've been chopped," intones the James Beard Award-winning host. Turns out the two-time cookbook author is just as straightforward in his own kitchen. "Bruschetta is one of the simplest and most universally crowd-pleasing appetizers you can make," says Ted. Give his recipe a try.
5 or so 1/2-inch slices from a baguette, cut on the diagonal
Extra-virgin olive oil for brushing
1 clove garlic, peeled and cut in half
1 cup fresh ricotta
15 arugula leaves
1/4 pound prosciutto or other salty, cured pork meat such as coppa, lomo or speck
Best quality extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
Heat grill or grill pan to medium-high. Place sliced bread on a sheet pan and brush both sides with olive oil. Grill bread until golden all over, about 2 to 3 minutes per side. Rub one side with garlic clove.
Spread 1 or 2 tablespoons ricotta on each slice, then press an arugula leaf into the cheese. Place a slice of prosciutto or other cured meat on top, and drizzle with olive oil. Serve.
Makes about 15 hors d'oeuvres.
Originally published in the April 2015 issue of Family Circle magazine.