These Prosciutto and Melon Crostini are a must-have sweet and salty appetizer combination, with salty prosciutto, sweet cantaloupe, crusty bread, whipped ricotta, and a balsamic glaze. All the delicious makings of a new way to enjoy the Italian classic.
- Prosciutto: Try to get Prosciutto di Parma DOP if possible. The DOP ensures it's from Italy. You'll need about 3oz for this recipe, with each slice cut in half length-wise.
- Cantaloupe: Such a delicious sweet fruit that's best in August. The best ripe cantaloupes will be tan with light green lines, and slightly firm with no brown spots.
- Ricotta cheese: Whole milk ricotta cheese is best but any will do.
- Balsamic reduction: Such a good sweet and slightly tangy topping for these crostini.
- Bread: Without bread there would be no crostini! You'll want a baguette (or similar) for this recipe.
- Basil (optional): Adds a touch of herby freshness sprinkled on top.
- Slice your prosciutto: slice each piece of prosciutto in half length-wise because one full piece is a bit much for these little crostini!
- Cut your melon: You can cut your melon in a few ways, but I used a vegetable peeler to get nice thin slices that I was able to fold. You could also use a knife and cut thicker slices.
- Whip the ricotta: Spoon the ricotta into a bowl and whisk vigorously for a few minutes until smooth and luscious.
- Cut the basil: Chiffonade the basil or roughly chop it.
One of my favorite things about crostini is that they're so simple to put together, and these Prosciutto and Melon Crostini are no different – a perfect easy summer appetizer.
- Step 1: Slice and toast your bread. With your oven on broil, drizzle olive oil over both slides of the sliced bread and place in a single layer on a baking sheet. Broil on both sides for about 2-4 minutes until golden.
- Step 2: Assemble the crostini. Onto each slice of bread, first layer a spoonful of whipped ricotta, then a folded slice of prosciutto, then a folded slice of cantaloupe. Finish with a light drizzle of balsamic reduction and a sprinkling of fresh basil.
The difference between crostini and bruschetta
While crostini and bruschetta seem interchangeable, there is actually one key difference between the two.
Simply put, bruschetta is a classic Italian dish with crusty rustic bread typically grilled and then rubbed with fresh garlic and topped with tomatoes. Whereas crostini usually use a thinner more uniform bread such as a baguette, are toasted by baking, and are topped with really anything.
Read more about it here.
Tips and tricks
- Slice your bread thick enough: Make sure you slice your bread at least ¾in - 1in thick so that it's sturdy enough to hold the topping.
- Generously oil before toasting: You want to make sure the bread gets nice and toasty, so make sure to generously oil it before toasting in the oven.
- Toast on both sides: Flip the bread after a few minutes in the oven so both sides get nice and golden brown.
- Don't pile the toppings too high: if you pile them too high the likelihood of them toppling over after you take a bite become more likely!
They should be about ¾" - 1" thick.
I like a baguette sliced on an angle!
Olive oil or any other neutral oil such as avocado, canola, etc.
Kind of. You can toast the bread in advance and prep the other ingredients, but I'd wait to assemble until at least 1 hour - 30 minutes before you're going to serve so the ricotta doesn't cause the bread to get soggy.
What to serve with crostini appetizer
- Cacio e Pepe Risotto (main)
- Vegetarian Baked Ziti (main)
- Creamy Roasted Red Pepper Pasta (main)
- Spicy Roasted Garlic White Bean Dip (appetizer)
- Roasted Garlic Baked Ricotta Dip (appetizer)
Prosciutto and Melon Crostini
- 3 oz prosciutto di Parma cut in half length-wise
- 1 cup cantaloupe sliced thin
- 1 cup whole milk ricotta cheese
- 12 inch baguette sliced ¾in - 1in thick
- 1-2 tbsp balsamic reduction
- 1 tablespoon fresh basil
- With your oven on broil, drizzle olive oil over both slides of the sliced bread and place in a single layer on a baking sheet. Broil on both sides for about 2-4 minutes until golden.
- Assemble – onto each slice of bread, first layer a spoonful of whipped ricotta, then a folded slice of prosciutto, then a folded slice of cantaloupe. Finish with a light drizzle of balsamic reduction and a sprinkling of fresh basil.