My sister is not the easiest person to feed. She has all sorts of food aversions so I’ve learned not to get offended when she doesn’t clear her plate. She loves to shop, I hate it. She’s a free spirit, I’m somewhat of a planner. She likes to stay up late, I'm early to rise... you get the idea. At some point, after playing in the clothing racks at Target and bathing together, we stumbled into completly different interests. We’re the kind of friends that probably wouldn’t have chosen the other out of a group, yet I consider my relationship with her indispensable. We all need broader perspective, and it’s the people who are least like you, who make you see things through new eyes. She is going to be a famous clothing designer, and spends long nights in front of a humming sewing machine, cutting, threading and studding pieces I am consistently impressed with.

If there is anything I have learned about working, it is that you need good snacks. Can I put that on a resume? Sitting down and using no other muscles besides your brain and hands can get awfully exhausting. So this is what I made for Cydney, a snack that is difficult not to like. I hope this was a nice respite from your frozen taquitos, sister. I love you.

RED GRAPE SALSA CROSTINI // Makes One Quart Salsa and About 20 Crostini
This makes a great holiday appetizer and can be made a day in advance. It keeps well, the onion just becomes stronger. Also goes well on some fresh fish or with some simple quesadillas, so you shouldn’t have an issue with leftovers.

1 1/2 lb. Seedless Red or Blue/Black Grapes*
1 Anaheim Chile
1 tbsp. Red Wine Vinegar
1 Bunch Fresh Cilantro, Finely Chopped
Half a Small Red Onion, Finely Chopped (more or less to taste)
Salt and Pepper

1 Whole Grain Baguette
8 oz. Chevre, room temperature
2 tbsp. Milk

Oven to 375’

1. Cut the anaheim chile into fourths and remove the seeds, dice as small as possible. Dice the red onion as tiny as possible, and throw those into the bowl as well. Use your discretion with how much onion you like. Dice the grapes, best to halve length and width wise, then chop. Add the vinegar and ½ cup of cilantro and toss. Sprinkle in some salt and pepper to your taste.
2. Slice the baguette, on a bias into ¼’’ slices and arrange on a baking tray. You will need to do this in two shifts. Bake on the upper rack for about 4 minutes, take them out and flip them over, bake for another 4 minutes and let them cool. Repeat with the other half.
3. Put the goat cheese in a small bowl, add the milk and mix it around to make it spreadable. Swipe one side of the baguette with about 1 tbsp. chevre. Place a heaping spoonful of the grape salsa on top and garnish with fresh cilantro.
* By using the most fresh, firm grapes you can find, you will make the chopping easier on yourself. Not to mention the texture benefit. I think using two tones of grapes, makes a beautiful final product.

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Reader Comments (63)

Can I pleeeeease come over to your house for dinner? simply beautiful!

November 12, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterCaitlin @ Roost

today's agenda: 1. call sister 2. buy grapes

November 12, 2009 | Unregistered Commentercourtney leduc

The TITLE of this post made me drool. I have to make that SOON.

November 12, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMiranda

this is exactly the recipe i've been looking for as a starter at a dinnerparty i am giving for some of my girlfriends... i wanted to serve goat cheese in filo dough and was looking for something on top. this salsa is perfect!

November 12, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterFenke

ooooooohhhhh! this looks fabulous! And I just have to say I love how healthy your recipes are, and the photography is always amazing!

November 12, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterBeth

I can't wait to make this. Yum!

November 12, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterEmma

i loooove your pictures!

November 12, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterKärt

i want it.

November 12, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterkristine

Haha, it was sooo tastey. But ill never rid of my taquitos:)

November 12, 2009 | Unregistered Commentercyd

what a unique recipe! Beautiful.

November 12, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterWhitney

Beautiful pictures and a delicious looking recipe. I am a huge fan of really simple salsas, and this one has a delightful grape twist.

November 12, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterElizabeth

I *love* the last series of photos - the crostini looks like it's just floating.

November 12, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterVincci

Sweet post... and stunning pics! Lovely snack, I love soft goat cheese on anything.

November 12, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMiriam/The Winter Guest

You are a genius! Beautiful! Cannot wait to make this!

November 12, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterLeah

grapes--unexpectedly versatile. love this idea.

November 12, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterLainey

Sounds AMAZING, and something i can eat too! you better bet your bottom dolla, ill be making this in the VERY near future! Keep up the good work SaraRenee

November 12, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterBrittany

What great pictures! The goat cheese is what wins it for me on this recipe...yum!

November 12, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterNutmeg Nanny

i wonder if concord grapes would make a particularly intense sweet-tangy-hot combination?

this is like the most sophisticated version of an old new york-jewish treat: matzoh with cream cheese and grape jelly, which an ex-boyfriend of mine occasionally persuaded me to try. i look forward to making this version!

November 12, 2009 | Unregistered Commenteremily

Oh, this looks fab! I made a clementine and cranberry salsa tonight and ate it on crackers with goat cheese....yummy!

November 12, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJan (Mixing Bowl Kids)

Beautiful photos as always! This looks sweet, tangy, juicy, crunchy all at once, like an amazing appetizer.

November 12, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterElissa

I've done a lot of things with goat cheese, but never paired them with grapes-- this looks delicious! And the photos are beautiful. I wish I had your natural light in my kitchen!

November 12, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterNicole (Cooking After Five)

That's funny to read because my sis and I are complete opposite but when it comes to food we share the same passion. Love your pictures.

November 12, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterHélène

You are so brilliant my friend. Love this.

November 13, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

Wow, these are gorgeous. And really ingenious, too. I love the photo of the onions. They look luminescent.

I don't see how anyone could not like this recipe. I've never thought of using grapes in this way. Innovative and delicious!

November 13, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterEl

This looks absolutely delicious! I wish I had a sister who made me such snacks! I guess I'll just have to make it myself :-)

November 13, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterLisa's Cocina

Where oh where do you come up with this stuff?! I would never in a million think of these ingredients going together yet it sounds like a taste explosion. I am in awe!

November 13, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAmy@OldSweetSong

@Caitlin- absoluetly, anytime. But I live in a studio so you have to stand while you eat, sorry ;)@Fenke- would be great in a phyllo cup! @Vinicci- maybe it was floating? Hugh is pretty talented. @emily- I would experiment with the concord. You could even go savory and maybe use thyme and shallot instead of cilantro/red onion. @Amy- I got the general idea from a caterer I used to work for, she put grapes in brie quesadillas, so I took that and ran with it.

November 13, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSara

I'd say that last series of photos is just brilliant, but really all of this is. The whole look of this post is painterly and evocative and perfect.

And it sounds pretty darn delicious too. I love grapes in savory applications, the touch of heat is such a nice thought.

November 13, 2009 | Unregistered Commentertara


this one is going in your cookbook, for sure - such an innovative use of grapes! looks so gorgeous and so tasty. i am also constantly surprised and delighted by my brother -- my opposite in many ways.

November 13, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterleela

God, your blog is gorgeous. This looks fantastic.

November 14, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterHeather

Your photos are beautiful. I love how you focused in on each item, one at a time in the triptych. Great detail.

November 14, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSarah

first off, lovely site. your photographs are amazing.
i would like to ask what type of camera do you use?

November 14, 2009 | Unregistered Commenters @ 102889.blogspot

What a great idea for salsa! They look delicious. And that bread also looks amazing. I love the last three photos with the different focuses. Way to go Hugh.

November 14, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterIsabelle

That looks really tasty and something I wouldn't have thought about.

You are right about appreciating the differences we have with our friends and family. Wouldn't it be boring if we all liked the same things ?

November 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJacqueline

What an original combination of flavours. Looks and sounds very tasty.

November 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterWizzythestick

Yum, yum, yum! You never cease to deliver in the snack arena. Definitely put that on your resume.

November 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterThe Leftoverist

just coming to your blog makes me feel cleaner . . . despite the pizza I ate for dinner last night. this looks and sounds absolutely amazing.

November 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterKat Braman

woah, this sounds amazing. grape salsa? i've never heard heard of such a thing! i have to make this asap.

November 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterHannah

I absolutely love your blog - gorgeous design and really beautiful photographs :)

November 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterChanel11

Ahhh, ha-ha! My sister and I are the exact same way. I'm the type A one, she's the free spirit. And always on some kind of vegan, gluten-free, everything-free diet. What an awesome recipe!

November 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterShauna from Piece of Cake

Bonjour Sarah

Mon estomac dit "MERCi !!!"

November 17, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterpierre

Love the last triplet of photos....want to eat the screen!

November 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterKitchen Butterfly

I'm somewhat shocked that an eater as picky as you make your sister out to be likes two very strong flavors that are known to repel picky eaters -- cilantro and red onion.

November 18, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAK

Y-U-M!! And original to boot! Love the trio shot focusing into the crostinis, Hugh.

November 18, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMollie

You know, I really feel like I know you. Like you're an old friend, someone I'm familiar with. Maybe it's because we are so similar (my sister and I are also exact opposites, and the best of friends) - or maybe because you are so good at telling a story - both through words and photos. Another beautiful post!

November 18, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAllison Arevalo

My sister and I have taken completely different courses in our lives too, and we love it when we do get a chance to get together. Your salsa sounds delicious!

November 19, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterKate

i would love to try this sometime! i'm so proud to be your higuera roommie. don't forget me when you're famous. :)

November 25, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterRuthie

This crostini is pure awesomeness. Grapes as a filling are unexpected but still a lovely surprise.

November 30, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDivina

Wow, this looks delicious.

December 5, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDes

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