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Pumpkin-Parmesan Toasts with Herb Pesto
© Victor Shraeger

Pumpkin-Parmesan Toasts with Herb Pesto



  1. 1 loaf 7-grain bread—crusts trimmed, bread sliced 1/3 inch thick and cut into thirty 3-by-1 1/2 -inch rectangles
  2. 1/4 cup walnuts
  3. 1 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  4. 1 cup canned unsweetened pumpkin puree
  5. 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  6. Salt and freshly ground pepper
  7. 1 cup flat-leaf parsley leaves
  8. 1 cup (loosely packed) cilantro leaves
  9. 1/2 cup pure olive oil
  10. 2 tablespoons dill sprigs
  11. 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  1. Preheat the oven to 400°. On a baking sheet, toast the bread for about 12 minutes, or until lightly browned. Let cool. In a cake pan, toast the walnuts for 3 to 4 minutes, or until browned. Let cool.
  2. Preheat the broiler. In a medium bowl, combine 1 cup of the Parmesan with the pumpkin puree and 1/2 teaspoon of the cumin. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. In a food processor, pulse 1/2 cup of the Parmesan, the parsley, cilantro, oil, dill and walnuts until minced. Add the cayenne and the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of cumin and season with salt and pepper. Spread each toast with 1 heaping teaspoon of the pesto and top with 1 1/2 heaping teaspoons of the pumpkin mixture.
  4. Arrange the toasts on a baking sheet and sprinkle with the remaining 2 tablespoons of Parmesan. Broil for 1 to 2 minutes, or until lightly browned on top. Serve warm or at room temperature.