Heirloom Bean and Tomato Crostone
Have you been baking a lot of bread during this pandemic time? More than you and your family can possibly eat? Maybe you have some slices in the freezer? Here is a delightful meatless meal to use the remainder of the bread that may be becoming a little hard and stale.
The flavorful bean broth rehydrates the toast…and for such a simple dish, this crostone is really extraordinary. Butter AND olive oil add rich mouthfeel while colorful cherry tomatoes add sweetness. Fresh thyme adds herbaceous earthiness while yellow eye beans bring a deep creaminess. It’s a peasant-style vegetarian dish drenched in flavor and texture, and is extremely satisfying. And extremely economical.
Heirloom Bean and Tomato Crostone Recipe
We served this with rosé which was the perfect complement on this hot day in the Mojave Desert. Oh, and the rosé came from a can, which I call emergency wine. Keep cans of wine in the back of the fridge, you’ll never know when you might need them in these unusual times. We like Dark Horse Rosé which fits the bill – dry, fruit-forward, Provence-style.
The bread I used for this recipe is my whole wheat version. Take my original recipe posted here and simply substitute 1 cup of King Arthur White Whole Wheat Flour for the All-Purpose Flour in the recipe. Add a little bit more water too, about 2 tablespoons then proceed as usual.
- 8 oz. yellow eye beans (or your favorite medium-sized heirloom beans)
- 2 cloves of garlic, smashed
- 3 thyme sprigs
- 8 oz. cherry tomatoes, halved
- 3 T. unsalted butter
- 1/2 t. thyme leaves
- kosher salt
- high quality olive oil
- fresh ground pepper
- leftover artisan bread, sliced
Check beans for debris. Rinse thoroughly. Put beans in a medium pot covered with about 3 inches of water. Add garlic and thyme sprigs. Boil for 5 minutes then turn the heat to simmer. Stir occasionally. Simmer until beans are tender. Add more water if necessary. All beans cook differently depending on type, size, age, etc. These yellow eye beans took an hour to become tender.
Slice tomatoes in half. Set aside.
Strain the beans when they are cooked, reserving the bean broth. Remove the garlic and thyme branches. Add the beans back to the pot along with 1 1/2 cups of the broth. If there is not enough liquid, add water to the broth.
Add tomatoes to the pot and bring to a simmer. Cook until the tomatoes are hot and starting to wilt, about 3 minutes. Turn off the heat and add butter and thyme leaves. Season to taste with salt.
Brush sliced bread with olive oil. Broil or grill to a nice golden brown.
Place bread in shallow bowls. Ladle bean mixture over the bread including broth. The bread will drink up the tasty broth. Drizzle with olive oil. Finish with fresh ground pepper. Thyme sprigs and edible flowers make for a nice presentation.
Quarantine Cuisine Links
Today in the Mojave Desert
100° and not minding the heat nor sunshine here. Be well my friends….