Appetizer Hors D'oeuvres Snack

Cheddar & Gruyere Toasts

Freeman’s Restaurant in the East Village of New York City is an outstanding casual, semi-hipster restaurant stuck away at the end of an alley that attracts huge crowds and tons of celebrities, authors, and a few tourists.  The New York Times described the restaurant best:  “…Appalachia, a British hunting lodge and a suburban 1950’s dinner party all converge.”

Every time I go there and wait to be seated, which can be long, I order up their Grilled Cheddar Toasts which are a creamy horseradish infused cheesy treat.   I played around with recreating the toasts and came up with my own version that makes a great addition to your hors d’oeuvre selection for any party.  If you are doing a sit-down try the larger variation of this:  Grilled Cheddar & Gruyere Bread.


  • French baguette or ciabatta baguette (preferred)
  • 4 cups extra sharp cheddar cheese, grated
  • 1 cup Gruyère cheese
  • 1/3 cup leeks, just the white part/ light green and finely chopped
  • 1/3 cup red onion, finely chopped
  • 1/3 cup yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons of chives, finely chopped
  • 1 large garlic clove, smashed and finely chopped
  • 4 tablespoons (or to taste) prepared horseradish, drained
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  • Dijon mustard for brushing
  • Olive oil
  •  Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Making It

  • Turn oven on to 400 degrees
  • Follow the crostini  recipe but undercook them, so only bake for 6 minutes, let cool and then brush them with the Dijon mustard
  • Mix the cheeses, vegetables, horseradish and mayonnaise in a bowl
  • Heap the cheese mix on each crostini and put on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil (makes cleaning easier) that has a wire rack on top.  I do this so the cheese that drips off the crostini does not form a ‘globby’ mess on the side of the toasts
  • Bake for ten minutes on top rack, take out when bubbling, let cool a little bit and serve warm to medium warm


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