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I've always thought of crostini as small bruschette but this isn't completely correct, as they are usually made with white bread instead of sourdough. I'm told that in the old days the bread would have been so stale that it would have to be soaked in a little stock or juice to make it chewy and edible again, but don't worry. In this day and age you don't have to do this. In Italy they simply grill a 1cm/½ inch slice of ciabatta, rub it with a cut clove of garlic, drizzle it with oil and season it with salt and pepper. Crostini are a great aperitivo with a drink, especially if you offer a few different toppings. Here are a few of my faves to get you into the spirit of things – each one will make enough to top 12 slices of crostini.
Grill your slices of ciabatta. While they're still hot, rub them gently with the cut side of the garlic and drizzle with good-quality extra virgin olive oil. Now finish with your favourite toppings...