Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Crostini Trio

I recently attended a holiday potluck and was inspired by ingredients from the Little Italy Farmers Market to make crostini.  I had a Prager Brother's olive rosemary loaf of beautiful bread that I sliced thin, drizzled lightly with olive oil, and toasted until crisp.  And I made these three toppings:

Cannellini Bean & Roasted Garlic Spread
a head of garlic from the Schaners
1 tablespoon fresh sage leaves from Suzie's, minced
sea salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cup cooked cannellini beans (Suzie's Farm seasonally has them fresh in the pod or dried), saving the cooking liquid
juice of a small lemon from Honeymoon Ranch

Separate the garlic cloves, drizzle with a touch of olive oil and a pinch of salt, and roasted at 350 degrees until soft and golden in color (this can be done on a cookie sheet, in a terra cotta garlic roaster, or wrapped in foil), about 30 minutes.  Allow to cool, remove skins, and set aside.

Over medium heat, saute the sage in a tablespoon of oil with a pinch of salt until fragrant.  Put all ingredients in a food processor, (start with just 1/2 the juice and add more to taste) including 1/4 cup bean broth. Blend until smooth. Taste and add salt to taste, and add more bean broth if it's too thick.

Makes about 1&1/2 cups.

Top with a drizzle of your favorite olive oil, fresh chopped parsley, caramelized onions, and/or some nice olives.

Sauteed Greens
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 medium red onion, quartered and sliced thin
1 tablespoon garlic, minced
a pinch of red pepper flakes
1 bunch kale, destemmed, sliced into ribbons
1/2 bunch mustard greens, destemmed, sliced into ribbons
a couple big handfuls of spinach
fresh parsley, chopped
sea salt
red wine vinegar

In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of oil over medium heat. Add onion, red pepper flakes and a pinch of salt and saute, stirring, until onions are soft. Add greens, garlic and another pinch of salt; cook until wilted, 4-5 minutes.  Remove from heat, stir in parsley and a splash of red wine vinegar, season with salt to taste.

Artichoke & Mushroom
a can of quartered artichokes, drained and chopped
1/2 lb cremini mushrooms, chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
a large shallot or 1 small leek, sliced thin
a pinch of red pepper flakes
sea salt
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon fresh thyme, minced
1 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh chives, sliced thin
freshly ground black pepper
thick, aged balsamic vinegar

In a large skillet, heat a tablespoon of oil over medium-high heat.  Add the mushrooms and a pinch of salt, and allow to cook until the mushrooms have given up their liquid and browned, stirring occasionally.  Set aside.

In a large skillet, heat a tablespoon of oil over medium-high heat.  Add the shallots, red pepper flakes, and a pinch of salt, and allow to cook until the shallots soften, stirring occasionally.  Then add garlic and thyme, and cook a few more minutes, stirring.  Remove from heat, stir all ingredients together, seasoning with salt and pepper to taste.  Top with a drizzle of balsamic vinegar.

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