Is There Anything Better Than Toast?

Kitchen Diaries: Kate in New York City

This week, I became obsessed with toast of all kinds. Perhaps influenced by the fact that I was buying bread last week like it was a discontinued shade of lipstick, nearly every meal I ate involved some variation of loaded toasts. Call it what you want — crostini, bruschetta, good 'ole toast — but it got me thinking: Is there anything more versatile than toasted carb ready to be topped with deliciousness?

There are endless possibilities with toast, but creamy sliced avocado, olive oil, and coarse salt has long been a favorite toast of mine. This week, as I was faced with the kind of overripe avocados you're always wishing for when shopping for guacamole, I opted to recreate the toast at Cafe Gitane in New York. Mushing the avocados up loosely in a bowl, I added ton of lemon juice and piled the chunky smear onto thick multigrain toast. Topped with lemon zest and loads of ground red pepper flakes, the result was super refreshing, springy, and substantial alongside a beet and walnut salad.

Later in the week, a tub of smoked ricotta from Salvatore Brooklyn found its way into my kitchen courtesy of some Fresh Direct impulse shopping on my part. Yes, you read that right: smoked ricotta. All of my favorite things in one? Yes please. This too was spread across nutty multigrain and topped with a drizzle of olive oil, cracked pepper, and sea salt. Eager to see a photo of this ridiculously delicious toast? Too bad I ate this as fast as a contestant on Survivor who just won a challenge where the reward was smoked ricotta.

Next up: I'm dead set on recreating the spicy white bean bruschetta recently taken off the menu at a favorite restaurant. With so many possibilities, toast has truly become an obsession. Even as I write this I'm devouring a piece of toasted pumpernickel with a light layer of cream cheese and a mound of lox. Send help — or at least more recipes!

What are your favorite items to transform toast into a meal?

(Image credits: Faith Durand)

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