Lentil and Goats Cheese Crostini

Easy, Moderate, Complex

Yields:  6 servings


  • 1 head of garlic
  • 2 cups of Beluga lentils (500 ml)
  • 2 cups of red wine (500 ml)
  • 2 cups of veal stock (500 ml)
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar (60 ml)
  • 1 carrot, coarsely chopped
  • 1 celery stalk, coarsely chopped
  • 1 onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1 4-ounce piece of bacon  (125 g)
  • 4 thick slices of country bread
  • 1 1/4 cups of olive oil (310 ml)
  • 12 cherry tomatoes
  • 4 large pieces of swiss chard, blanched
  • 8 slices of pancetta
  • 1 teaspoon butter (5 ml)
  • 1/4 cup Goat cheese (60 ml)
  • Maldon salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • Grape must, also known as Vincotto, to garnish


  1. Pre-heat oven to 400 ˚F (200 ˚C). Slice off the top of the garlic head and wrap it in aluminum foil. Bake until soft, about 30 minutes. Squeeze out garlic and put aside.
  2. Cook the lentils in salted boiling water with the carrot, celery, onions and bacon.  Reduce head and let simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes or until the lentils are tender.  Drain, discard the vegetables and bacon and keep aside. 
  3. Meanwhile, in another pot, bring the red wine, veal stock and brown sugar to a boil. Reduce heat and let simmer for 30 minutes until reduced by half and thick, about 30 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and keep aside.
  4. Meanwhile, in a pan, grill the bread in 1/4 cup of olive oil on both sides for about 30 seconds.   Finish in oven for 5 minutes to crisp them.  Put aside.
  5. To poach the tomatoes, pour about 1 cup of olive oil in a small stockpot.  Heat the oil on medium and when hot, toss in the tomatoes. Remove when the skin begins to crack, about 3 minutes.  Drain, keeping the oil for another use. 
  6. For the pancetta, place the slices on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper. Cover with another piece of parchment paper and cover with another baking sheet to ensure they stay flat.  Cook in the oven for 15 minutes or until crispy.
  7. To assemble, sauté the Swiss chard in butter.  Add lentils and heat gently on medium low until warm and season with salt and pepper. Stir in the butter.  Spread the garlic and a generous dollop of goat’s cheese on each slice of bread and then place in the oven for a few minutes so that the cheese melts just slightly and the bread is warm. Place a touch of goat cheese in the centre of each plate to prevent the bread from sliding.  Place the warm bread on top with a couple of slices of pancetta. Top with the lentil mixture and garnish with red wine sauce and a drizzle of Vincotto