Arugula Pistachio Pesto Crostini with Cello Cheese

This blog post has been sponsored by Cello Cheese

Summer is starting to feel like it’s winding down, so lately I’ve been doing everything to hold on to all the summer produce I can: Eating tomato toast every morning, grabbing all the peaches at the farmers market, taking handfuls of berries every time I open the fridge, etc. So when Cello reached out to me about trying their Copper Kettle cheese and sharing it with you I figured it was a perfect way to use up all the produce from summer. In the words of Wilson Phillips: Hold on for one more day.

The cheese itself is so elevated, it’s perfect for snacking with the crackers and fruit; it has a nutty flavor with a caramel finish.Cello’s Copper Kettle Cheese is cooked in copper vats, and then aged for 16 months to develop complex flavors unlike any other cheese you have tried! To take it to the next level, I whipped up an arugula pesto to make a delicious summer crostini bite.

The pesto’s perfect because you get the bite from the arugula evened out with pistachios, and then the nuttiness is amplified even more with the nutty flavors from the Copper Kettle cheese. The fruit just finishes up the balancing act.

All of this works really well for something you can make ahead of summer parties, too. The pesto and toasted bread can be prepared ahead of time so all you have to do is slice the fruit and serve.

Arugula Pistachio Pesto
1/3 cup shelled pistachios
1/2 cup grated Cello Copper Kettle cheese
1 clove garlic, roughly chopped
3 cups baby arugula
3/4 -1 teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon cracked black pepper
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tablespoon fresh lime or lemon juice

In the bowl of a food processor or a blender pitcher, add the pistachios, cheese, and garlic and pulse together until the pistachios are finely chopped. Scrape down the sides and add the arugula, salt, and pepper. Pulse until the arugula is finely chopped then scrape down the sides again.

With the blender or food processor running, add the olive oil in a slow steady stream until it’s all added then scrap down the sides one final time and pulse until the pesto’s all combined.

Scrape out all the pesto into a bowl and stir in the lemon or lime juice and taste for salt. Add more if needed then serve. If you want to make this ahead then place plastic wrap right on the surface of the pesto and refrigerate.

To make the crostini:
1 baguette, sliced in 1/4-1/2” slices
olive oil
various slices of summer fruit, like strawberries, cantaloupe, and nectarines

Place the baguette slices on a baking sheet and lightly brush with the olive oil. Broil on high for 1-2 minutes, just until the breads toasted then remove from the oven and let cool. Add some of the pesto on top of each piece of toast and finish with a couple slices of fruit or additional Copper Kettle cheese shards.

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