Warm Asparagus and Bacon Toast with Red Pepper-Shallot Vinaigrette

Total Time:
50 min
25 min
25 min

4 appetizer servings

  • 12 ounces thin or medium asparagus, trimmed
  • 4 slices bacon, halved crosswise
  • 4 (3/4-inch-thick slices) thick-crusted country bread
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 4 slices mozzarella or Monterey Jack
  • Red Pepper-Shallot Vinaigrette:
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons sherry vinegar
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh chives
  • 1/4 cup pitted kalamata or black olives, chopped
  • 3 shallots, thinly sliced
  • 1 red bell pepper, roasted, peeled, and cut into thin strips
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the asparagus on a baking sheet in 4 bunches of 4 or 5. Place 2 pieces of bacon over each bunch, forming an X. Bake for about 15 minutes, or until the asparagus is partially cooked. Remove from the oven, leaving the oven on.

  • Lightly toast the bread in the oven. In a small bowl, combine the oil and garlic and brush on the bread. Transfer each bundle of asparagus and bacon to a slice of bread and top with a slice of cheese. Place on the baking sheet and bake for an additional 3 to 5 minutes, or until the cheese is melted.

  • To serve, spoon 1/4 of the vinaigrette on each of 4 plates. Place a warm toast on each pool vinaigrette.

Red Pepper-Shallot Vinaigrette:
  • To make the vinaigrette: In a medium bowl, whisk together the oil, vinegar, salt, and pepper. Stir in the chives, olives, shallots, and bell pepper; set aside.

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