This is a great recipe for serving a crowd. The goat cheese “fonduta” is luscious with a subtle tanginess from the fresh goat cheese. It would be more accurate to call it a goat cheese mornay sauce instead of a “fonduta” but the latter sounds cooler. When the cheese sauce is broiled on a crostini, it becomes caramelized and crispy around the edges. Eat it while it’s still warm and you will experience bliss.
The best part of this recipe is that you can customize it. Instead of seared sugar snap peas, I experimented with fried rosemary and bacon. There are literally hundreds of different toppings and combinations that would work so please feel free to get creative. —Josh Cohen
- Serves 8-10 people
grapeseed oil (or any neutral oil with a high smoking point)
sugar snap peas, ends trimmed and fibrous seam removed
freshly ground black pepper
1 1/4 cups
goat gouda, grated on a box grater (or your favorite aged goat milk cheese)
- Begin by prepping the crostini. Preheat your oven to 450 degrees. Slice your baguette into thin rounds. Arrange the baguette slices on a rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Don’t overcrowd the baking sheet. Use multiple baking sheets if you need to. The sliced baguette should be arranged in a single even layer. Drizzle olive oil over the sliced baguette. Bake for 3-5 minutes, until the edges of the baguette begin to look toasty and brown. You don’t want your crostini to get too brown, because they will go back into the oven again later. When the crostini are lightly toasted, remove them from the oven and set them aside.
- Set a large skillet over high heat, and add enough grapeseed oil to barely coat the bottom of the skillet. When the skillet is very hot and faint wisps of smoke are just beginning to appear, add the sugar snap peas. Don’t overcrowd the skillet (cook the sugar snaps in batches if you need to). Let the sugar snaps cook undisturbed for about 30 seconds. Then, stir the sugar snaps so that they become seared on all sides. Do not overcook the sugar snaps. They should taste “al dente” and not overcooked. After about two minutes in the skillet, the sugar snaps should be seared and nicely cooked. Remove them to a rimmed baking sheet to cool, and season them with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Using a fine microplane, add the zest of half of the lemon and toss to coat. Add a squeeze of lemon juice as well. Taste one of the sugar snaps and adjust the seasoning as necessary with more salt, pepper, and/or lemon. When you are happy with the taste of the sugar snaps, slice each sugar snap on the bias into thirds and set them aside.
- To make the goat cheese “fonduta,” set a medium pot over low heat and add the butter. When the butter has melted, add the flour and adjust the heat to medium. Stir the flour and butter to form a paste. Cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring regularly. Add the milk in a slow, thin stream while whisking continuously. By adding the milk slowly and whisking continuously, your sauce will hopefully be smooth instead of lumpy. Increase the heat slightly; you want to bring the milk to a simmer but you do not want a rapid boil. Stir regularly. The sauce should simmer for 2 minutes and become velvety and creamy. If the sauce looks too thick, you can always add a few tablespoons of water until you have a velvety consistency.
- When you are happy with the consistency of your sauce, reduce the heat to low and add the chevre and the goat gouda. Stir to incorporate. You should now have a beautiful looking cheese sauce. Season with a pinch of salt and a few cracks of pepper. Taste the sauce and adjust with more salt or pepper as necessary.
- Turn on your broiler. Coat each crostini in a layer of cheese sauce. Make sure to fully coat the top of each crostini (this will prevent the edges of the bread from burning). Broil the crostini until the cheese sauce is bubbling and beginning to caramelize. Top each crostini with a few of the sliced sugar snaps. Serve immediately. Enjoy.