Repertoire: Gjelina-Inspired Summer Crostini


Long before the Gjelina cookbook was written, I read an article in Food & Wine magazine where Chef Travis Lett shared a few recipes from the restaurant. I immediately ripped the pages out and tried to recreate some of the dishes I’d remembered eating there. One of my favorites was the “Grilled Apricot, Burrata and Country Ham Salad.”

After making it a few times over the past several years, I thought it would be fun to turn it into an appetizer instead. In the recipe, Lett says to freely swap out seasonal fruits, so I used peaches since they are lovely this time of year. The original recipe also involves grilling the fruit, which is fantastic but obviously more work. If the grill is hot, by all means grill away — but honestly, they’re perfectly delicious when served fresh and ripe. Besides, isn’t summer all about keeping it simple?

Gjelina-Inspired Summer Crostini
  1. 1 baguette
  2. extra virgin olive oil
  3. salt + pepper
  4. 2 balls of burrata (approx 8oz)
  5. 1 package of prosciutto di Parma
  6. 1 large, ripe, but slightly firm peach, thinly sliced (*can be grilled for more flavor)
  7. 1 cup of thinly sliced radicchio
  8. 1 cup of arugula
  9. 1/2 lemon
  10. balsamic reduction (I use Napa Valley Naturals Grand Reserva Balsamic)
  1. Thinly slice baguette (1/2" thick or less) and place on baking tray. Drizzle with olive oil and top with salt and pepper. Broil for about 2 minutes or until golden brown, then flip over and repeat. Remove from oven and let cool.
  2. Combine radicchio and arugula in a small bowl. Squeeze half a lemon on top of the salad, drizzle with olive oil (approx 1 TBL), stir then season with salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Cover each piece of baguette with a layer of burrata, a small piece of prosciutto, one or two slices of peach, and a pinch of salad. Once all toasts are dressed, drizzle the balsamic reduction over the top. Finish with a final sprinkle of salt and pepper.
  1. This recipe can easily be halved to accommodate fewer people.
Adapted from Travis Lett
Adapted from Travis Lett


Repertoire: Winter Granola

Winter Granola
Winter Granola

I’m one of those people that can eat the same breakfast, day in and day out and never tire of it. In a perfect world, that would consist of a double espresso and a pastry. Alas, that doesn’t work for me. After about an hour I’d be shaking and foggy from lack of protein. 

Over the years, I’ve come to realize the best breakfast for me is granola. I eat it almost every day without fail, making large batches several times a month. You’d think I’d be sick of it by now, but I’m not. In fact, I crave it constantly. It’s also one of those recipes that keeps evolving and getting better with each experimentation. 

I call this my Winter Granola. It’s full of nuts and seeds, crunch and heartiness with just the slightest hint of sweetness. If that bothers you, you could certainly add some coconut sugar, but I don’t think it needs it. I know there are a bazillion different granola recipes out there, but this one is definitely a keeper. It’s paleo, vegan, vegetarian, easy to make and most importantly, energy sustaining.

Winter Granola
  1. 2 lbs of rolled oats (gluten free, if preferred)
  2. 2 cups roughly chopped raw pecans
  3. 2 cups raw sliced almonds
  4. 2 cups unsweetened coconut flakes
  5. 1/2 cup raw pepitas
  6. 1/2 cup raw sunflower seeds
  7. 1/2 cup raw slivered almonds
  8. 3 tsp ground cinnamon
  9. 2 tsp ground ginger
  10. 1 tsp sea salt
  11. 1 cup of olive oil
  12. 1 cup of maple syrup
  13. 12oz of dried tart cherries
  1. Set oven to 300 degrees F and make sure oven racks are in top 1/3, middle 1/3 and bottom 1/3 of oven. Combine all of the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Stir well. Add the oil then the syrup and stir to coat completely. Spread evenly onto 3 parchment-lined baking sheets. Pat granola down so it is flat and even. Put one tray on each rack. Bake for 10 minutes, then move the trays up/down a rack so that each tray bakes on each rack for approximately 10 minutes (you'll do this 3 times). The key is to have nicely browned granola. If it's underdone, it will not taste right! Likewise, it won't taste well if it's burnt. Generally speaking it's about 10-13 minutes on each rack to get a nice golden brown color. Once baked, allow to cool on racks or stove top for several hours (this is when it sets and crisps up). Pour dried cherries on top, then pour into storage containers. Refrigerate or freeze (it tastes best cold).
  1. If you only have 2 racks in your oven, set them up evenly and cook the third tray on its own in the middle. It's important that the baking sheets do not have too thick of a layer, so I wouldn't recommend squeezing everything on to 2 sheets.