Ummmmmm………….that would the sound of me speechless. When I read about Heidi’s Magic Sauce on 101 Cookbooks, I had no doubt it would be good. But really, words fail me. So amazingly good, that I probably should confess that I licked the plate clean, but no one was watching, so I will never tell!
With some freshly made cannelini beans in the frig I knew crostini were the perfect match for the sauce; you will want something to mop up all of the tiniest of oil drops. Really, it is that good.
After frying up the bread in a thinly coated skillet, I tossed in the white beans and shook the pan for 60 seconds, just to warm up the beans. Adding in some Slow-Roasted Tomatoes inspired by Eve at the Garden of Eating and tossing them with the beans and a couple tablespoons of the magic sauce added a little savory sweetness to the mix. Spooning the mixture over of the bread and adding another pour of the magic sauce over each crostini made one of the most perfect Saturday afternoon meals I have had in ages.
I did double the recipe for my own benefit because I knew 2/3 of a cup would go far to fast. Obviously it keeps really well in the refrigerator and definitely improves as it ages. But don’t think it will last long! My next thought is to puree it with some of the white beans and eat it as a dip or thin it a little and pour it over pasta. Of course simply dipping toasted pita into it is also an option. The possibilities are really endless!
Cannelini Bean Crostini with Magic Herb Sauce (from 101 Cookbooks)
Magic Herb Sauce
(makes 2/3 cup)
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon fresh rosemary leaves
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
1 teaspoon fresh oregano leaves
2 teaspoons sweet paprika
2 medium cloves of garlic, smashed into a paste
1 well-crumbled bay leaf
pinch of red pepper flakes
1/4 teaspoon + fine grain sea salt
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
Heat olive oil over medium heat in a skillet until hot. Remove from heat. While oil is heating, bruise fresh herbs in mortar and pestle. Stir paprika, garlic, bay leaf and pepper flakes into oil and then add herbs, salt and lemon juice. Spoon 2 tablespoons over cooked white beans and serve warm or at room temperature. This sauce will continue to improve as it ages. Keep it in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature if oil has congealed.
Cannelini Bean Crostini
2-3 slices crusty bread per diner
olive oil for frying
1/2 cup cooked cannelini beans per diner
2 slow-roasted tomatoes (or sun-dried tomatoes) chopped, per diner
salt to taste
Combine beans, tomatoes and 2 teaspoon of magic sauce per diner in bowl and set aside. Heat skillet over high heat and add just enough olive oil to cover bottom. Fry slices of bread on both side until crisp and beginning to brown. Remove from skillet and place on plates. Spoon bean mixture over bread slices and add a teaspoon of oil to each slice if desired.
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