Sunday, September 16, 2007

White Bean Bruschetta

I am back from a whirlwind, amazing trip to New York and then a short jaunt through Las Vegas to gawk at semi-celebrities in town for the MTV Video Music Awards (Paris Hilton, the guys from Entourage, the girls from The Hills, etc.) and have not had a minute to cook.

Until now.

I think I was overloaded with good food and needed a break. Pastrami at Katz's, a slice late at night, gallons of cocktails, plus lots more, does get overwhelming.

This simple recipe is from Esca, a theatre district restaurant co-owned by Mario Batali and Joe Bastianich and the kitchen is led by chef and famed fish guy Dave Pasternack. We had a truly fantastic dinner there and even got to meet and chat briefly with Pasternack.

At the start of each meal, diners are presented with a small bowl of marinated olives and this bruchetta. It is simple, divine and a signal of the food to come.

Thank you Brian for sweeping me away to New York where I fell in love: with an amazing city, and even more than ever with you.

White Bean Bruschetta:
(serves 2-4 as an appetizer)

1 can cannelloni beans, drained and rinsed
1 4.4 oz can boneless, skinless mackerel fillets
1/2 of a small red onion, finely chopped
1 tsp fresh rosemary, finely chopped
Salt and Pepper to taste
Chiffonade of fresh basil (ribbons), about 2 tbs
3 tbs olive oil, plus enough for drizzling on bread
2 tbs red wine vinegar
1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1 thin baguette, sliced into 1/2 to 1 inch thick rounds

Toss beans and mackerel, breaking up fish. Add red onions and rosemary, then season with salt and pepper. Toss, then let stand.

Mix red wine vinegar, olive oil, red pepper, garlic and salt and pepper in a small bowl - this creates a vinaigrette. Pour over bean mixture, stir well. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.

Brush or rub bread with olive oil, salt and pepper. Bake on a sheet pan in a 350 oven for about 10 minutes, or until golden brown and crisp.

Top toasts with bean mixture, garnish with basil chiffonade and serve.


Christine said...

This looks really good! Even better, I have a can of cannellini beans left over from my meal so I'll have to make this when I get home. I can't wait to hear all about NYC and LV when we go to Pizzeria Bianco - it can't come soon enough!

The Food Hunter said...

This looks delicious. I can't wait to try it.

Mo said...

What a tasty and healthy looking bruschetta!
I'm really looking forward to hearing more about your trip!

Peabody said...

You certainly have been traveling quite a bit!
Looks like a great alternative to the common bruschetta.

Deborah Dowd said...

This looks creamy and delicious! I love white beans amd on top of crispy bread... there are not many things better!

Deborah said...

This looks wonderful!!

Kelly-Jane said...

I love this kind of bruchetta :) and looking forward to hearing more of your wonderful trip!

Janet said...

Hi Kirsten, welcome back from NYC! Did you love it, I certainly did when I went. This bruschetta looks great, I better try it, if it lives up to you Fig, Proscuitto and Mascarpone Bruschetta it will be a winner!!

Kirsten said...

Hi all! DO try this bruschetta - Mario Batali and Pasternack certainly know their stuff. :)

I LOVED NYC!! Another recipe inspired by my trip coming soon.

Peter M said...

Great bean idea concept....noted!

Also, Batali & Bastianich make a great team!

Terry B said...

Kirsten--Welcome back! The bruschetta sounds wonderful. Even more wonderful is thoughts of New York. The first time I got there, I felt so jazzed, but also so relaxed and at home. I was convinced I had been born there, then whisked away as an infant and raised by wolves in the Midwest. That feeling grows with every visit. Hope you share more New York stories with us. And congrats and good luck to Brian as he starts his new gig.

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