Tartine with Bean Spread and Purple Basil

April 13, 2012 Published by Dina

I make this bean spread often as an appetizer to spoon onto small crostini. Here I use it to top grilled bread for a lunch or a light supper. Serve accompanied by a small salad with crisp vinaigrette. For a vegan version leave the pecorino out.



Long slices of country bread

Olive oil

Parmesan or pecorino, shaved or chopped  roasted peppers

Purple basil


Bean spread:


4 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons fresh thyme

1 can cannelini beans, drained and rinsed

A few hot pepper flakes

Salt and pepper

2 tablespoon flat leaf parsley, chopped



Bean spread:

Heat oil in a skillet large enough to hold the beans. Add onion and cook until softened. Add garlic and cook until fragrant. Add thyme and stir to infuse the oil with the herb.

Add the beans and cook over medium low heat until beans are heated through.

Add hot pepper, salt, pepper and lemon juice.

With a hand held potato masher mash some of the bean to a coarse paste, leaving about 1/2-1/3 of the beans unmashed.

Drizzle with more olive oil if mixture seems dry.

Add the parsley and basil and stir to distribute it throughout the dip.

Spoon into a serving dish or serve with crisp breads or spoon onto grilled crostini.

Drizzle bean dip with a little olive oil before serving.

To assemble the panini:

Lightly brush the bread with olive oil and grill on a panini maker or in a skillet just so the outside of the bread is crisp but the inside still soft.

Spread bean dip over the bread piling it up a bit. Shave parmesan or pecorino over and garnish with additional basil leaves.

Serve at room temperature accompanied by a small salad.

[captionpix align=”center” theme=”photo” width=”630″ imgsrc=”http://lemonsnew.mymediamagnet.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/P1080161.jpg” captiontext=”Delicious Fresh Buns”]



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  • alexis says:

    Mouth watering. I am going to try this at my next dinner party in Toronto.