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Although I have never been a big fan of sweet peppers, I absolutely love this dish. The stewed peppers and onions are broken down creating a sweet and savory topping for the creamy and crunchy ricotta crostoni. It is a perfect way to start a dinner party.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large sauté pan, heat the olive oil. Add the onion and garlic, 1 teaspoon of salt, fresh black pepper, and cook for 5-7 minutes. Continuously stirring. Once the onions are soft and translucent, add the peppers and the remaining teaspoon of salt. Sauté until the peppers are soft, about 4 minutes.
Add the vinegar, oregano and sugar. Stir to combine. Add the tomato sauce and cook for 2 minutes. Taste for seasoning. Add more salt and pepper if necessary. Transfer the mixture to a large baking dish. Run the back of a spoon over the top of the peperonata to flatten the surface.
Place the peperonata in the oven and bake, uncovered, for 10 minutes. Remove it from the oven, stir in the olives, and return to the oven, cooking uncovered for an additional 30-35 minutes, until the top and sides begin to brown. Remove from the oven. Serve warm or at room temperature.
To assemble, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Slice the baguette on a severe angle, creating 1/2 inch thick slices. Brush each slice with olive oil and place in oven for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and rub the oiled side with the garlic clove. Add a drizzle of olive oil. Top each slice with ricotta. Scoop some of the peperonata mixture over the ricotta. Finish each slice with a sprinkle of italian parsley and maldon salt.
Makes 12 crostoni