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September 4, 2018

Cheers To Toast!

If you told me 10 years ago that I would one day write an article about toast, I would have thought about a career change. But one of the hottest trends to hit the menu since sliced bread is…well… sliced bread!

Yes. Toast is a thing! But this isn’t Granny’s toast with jam—one of my favorite childhood food memories, by the way. We’ve seen toast in many cuisines including Italian bruschetta, French crostini, and Spanish bocadillos—small grilled sandwiches, and its quickly going mainstream.


At a recent dinner, I just saw Foie Gras and Bone Marrow Toast with Concord Grape Gastrique. In upstate New York, Chef Kevin Toole at Mendon 64 serves a playful Brioche Toast with candy bacon, smashed avocado and quail egg. Seasons 52 in Tampa, FL serves Avocado Toast featuring wood-grilled sourdough, toybox tomatoes, pickled red onions, cilantro and 15-year aged balsamic. And just when I thought I’ve seen everything served from a food truck, I just discovered The East Coast Toast Truck—serving nothing but toast!

So where do you start if you want to add some exciting toast dishes to your menu? (Again, I can’t believe that I just said exciting toast!) The combinations are endless!

Experiment with various breads like brioche, multigrain, baguette, anything local, artisan or organic. I’m even seeing toast without the bread—sweet potato toast is also hitting the menu!

Use spreads such as goat cheese, fig jam, duck-fat butter, hummus, or mashed avocado. A few Custom Culinary® products that I love to use on toast are Gold Label ready-to-use Harissa, Bacon Onion Marmalade, and Wild Mushroom Tapenade.

Include various textures like roasted beets, citrus segments, chopped nuts, sliced radishes or crumbled crispy bacon.

Combine sweet and savory flavors including balsamic vinegar glaze, Gorgonzola, roasted pears, or wasabi paste.

Dessert toasts can include bananas, Nutella, or our Gold Label Ready-to-use Crème Anglaise Sauce.

Whether it is ethnic, regional, local, simple or complex, let’s have a toast to toast! Make it fresh, make it unique, make it fun!

Michael Smith

Michael Smith
Michael Smith, CEC, AAC
Corporate Executive Chef, Segment Sales
Custom Culinary, Inc.