12slicesbaguette,½ inch thick, cut on the diagonal, gluten-free if necessary
1tablespoonolive oilextra virgin, for brushing the baguette slices
1cupricotta cheese,whole milk
1.5tablespoonsolive oil,extra virgin
½teaspoonorange zestfinely grated
Cranberry Orange Topping
¾cupfresh cranberries,coarsely chopped
2tablespoonorange juice,or orange liqueur like Triple Sec
2tablespoonsweetener* see recipe notes below
fresh thyme leaves
1pinchflaky sea salt
Heat oven to 375°F.
Use a sharp knife to slice the baguette into ½ inch thick slices. Cut slightly on the diagonal.Brush lightly with olive oil.
Space on a baking sheet and place in pre-heated oven. Bake for 7 - 8 minutes or until golden brown, flipping once halfway through. Crostini should be lightly browned, lightly toasted but still "springy" in the middle. Remove from oven.
In the bowl of a food processor, combine ricotta cheese with olive oil, orange zest and salt. Process until very smooth, about 1 - 2 minutes.
Coarsely chop fresh (or frozen) raw cranberries and combine with orange juice and sweetener of your choice: honey, maple syrup or powdered zero-calorie sweetener like Monkfruit.
To assemble crostini, spread each toasted slice with a generous layer of whipped ricotta and top with a tablespoon of the cranberry mixture. Garnish with a few thyme leaves and a sprinkle of flaky sea salt and serve immediately.
A note about sweetenersIf you're not on a special diet, you can sweeten the cranberries with sugar. You can also use a tablespoon or so of an orange liqueur, like Gran Marnier or Triple Sec.If you're following a vegan diet, you could use maple syrup.And if you're on a low-carb or keto diet, use a zero-calorie natural sweetener like Monkfruit with Erythritol or Swerve.In all cases, add a small amount of sweetener, taste, and then add more as needed. The amount you use will depend on how tart your cranberries are.