Bruschetta Three Ways (White Bean, Fresh Tomato, Tuna Salad)

Bruschetta: a staple of an Italian antipasto plate. Thick slices of toasted, crusty bread, drizzled with olive oil, rubbed with garlic, and garnished with a variety of Mediterranean toppings.

Although it’s difficult to narrow down my absolute favorite bruschetta toppings, Heirloom Tomatoes and Basil, Olive Oil Tuna Salad, and Garlic-Herb White Bean are classically irresistible.

Make one topping or all three, this summer sensation is fabulous for a family or friends get-together. Let your guests add spoonfuls of their favorite topping to slices of crusty ciabatta.

Picnic perfection!

 

Makes: for 4 people

The Ingredients

For bread base:

1 large loaf crusty ciabatta (I especially like olive oil ciabatta!)

2 peeled cloves garlic

~1/2 cup olive oil

For tomato-basil bruschetta:

6 medium heirloom tomatoes, cored and chopped in bite-sized pieces

~1/2 cup basil, chiffonaded

For olive oil tuna salad:

3 cans Italian olive oil tuna, drained (Genova is my favorite brand for this bruschetta!)

1/2 small red onion, finely diced

1 pickling cucumber, finely diced

1/2 cup celery hearts, finely diced

1/3 cup scallions, minced

~1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 lemon

Salt and pepper to taste

For garlic-herb white beans:

1/2 lb. dried Cannellini (white) beans (or sub canned cannellini beans for this topping in a pinch!)

9 garlic cloves (3 peeled whole, 3 finely minced)

2 large sprigs rosemary

2 large sprigs thyme

~1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

Salt and pepper to taste

 

The Steps

For olive oil tuna salad:

With a fork, combine tuna, onion, cucumber, celery hearts, scallions, and olive oil in a medium bowl. Break up tuna with fork!

Squeeze juice of lemon, and add salt and pepper to toss. Mix well.

Tip: Keeps in fridge covered with plastic wrap for up to 5 days!

 

For garlic-herb white beans:

In a medium pot, add beans. Add 3 whole cloves garlic, rosemary, and thyme (no need to take off stems!). Add cold water until beans are covered by about an inch of water. Cover pot and turn heat on medium/low heat. Simmer and occasionally stir for about 30 minutes, adding more water so beans are submerged any time the beans begin to show above the water line. Repeat process of adding water about every 30 minutes for 2 hours. After about two hours, test beans for doneness. They should be tender but not falling apart. Do not add water the last 20 minutes or so of simmering! You don’t want watering, tender beans!

Remove from heat. Take out stems of herbs and garlic cloves.

Add 6 minced garlic cloves and olive oil. Stir, and add more olive oil if beans seem dry.

Add salt and pepper to taste.

OR use canned cannellini beans and simply add 3 minced garlic cloves, herbs, olive salt and pepper to drained beans. Microwave bean mixture in increments of 1 minute until hot!

Tip: Keeps in fridge covered with plastic wrap for up to a week!

 

For bread base:

Turn oven on broil high. Place 1 inch slices of ciabatta on cookie sheet drizzled with olive oil. Rub both sides of bread with olive oil. Place in broiler about 3 minutes per side (about 6 minutes in total) until lightly golden.

Remove from oven and rub one side of each piece of bread with garlic clove.

Suggestion: place 3 pieces of toasted bread on each plate, and top one with tomatoes and basil, one with olive oil tuna salad, and one with garlic-herb white beans. Serve with a chilled glass rosé (see yesterday’s post for an incredibly delicious, inexpensive rosé suggestion!)

 

The Steps with Pictures

For olive oil tuna salad:

With a fork, combine tuna, onion, cucumber, celery hearts, scallions, and olive oil in a medium bowl. Break up tuna with fork!

Squeeze juice of lemon, and add salt and pepper to taste. Toss well.

Tip: Keeps in fridge covered with plastic wrap for up to 5 days!

For garlic-herb white beans:

In a medium pot, add beans. Add 3 whole cloves garlic, rosemary, and thyme (no need to take off stems!). Add cold water until beans are covered by about an inch of water. Cover pot and turn heat on medium/low heat. Simmer and occasionally stir for about 30 minutes, adding more water so beans are submerged any time the beans begin to show above the water line. Repeat process of adding water about every 30 minutes for 2 hours. After about two hours, test beans for doneness. They should be tender but not falling apart. Do not add water the last 20 minutes or so of simmering! You don’t want watering, tender beans!

Remove from heat. Take out stems of herbs and garlic cloves.

Add 6 minced garlic cloves and olive oil. Stir, and add more olive oil if beans seem dry.

Add salt and pepper to taste.

OR use canned cannellini beans and simply add 3 minced garlic cloves, herbs, olive salt and pepper to drained beans. Microwave bean mixture in increments of 1 minute until hot!

 

Tip: Keeps in fridge covered with plastic wrap for up to a week!

For bread base:

Turn oven on broil high. Place 1 inch slices of ciabatta on cookie sheet drizzled with olive oil. Rub both sides of bread with olive oil. Place in broiler about 3 minutes per side (about 6 minutes in total) until lightly golden.

Remove from oven and rub one side of each piece of bread with garlic clove.

Suggestion: place 3 pieces of toasted bread on each plate, and top one with tomatoes and basil, one with olive oil tuna salad, and one with garlic-herb white beans. Serve with a chilled glass rosé (see yesterday’s post for an incredibly delicious, inexpensive rosé suggestion!)

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