Friday, March 16, 2012

Cheap and Easy Weeknight Dinner Series: Crustini with Hummus, Arugula and Roasted Tomatoes

Happy Friday everyone! Hope you are all having a wonderful day. I am very excited to bring you this recipe for a couple of reasons. 1) I made it up! And it was a success! That's very exciting for me. 2) It's vegan! While I'm certainly not a vegan, my sissy is and I always like to share recipes that she can make without tweaking. So without further ado, here is my dish!

I was watching a Rachael Ray the other day and she made crustini with the roasted tomatoes, but it didn't seem very substantial and I wanted this creation to be my dinner. I was also browsing through my recipes and I came across my post on the baguette with butter bean puree and arugula. I had a moment of inspiration and decided to combine the two ideas and create something amazing. At least I was hoping it would be amazing. Spoiler alert: it was!

Crustini with Hummus, Arugula and Roasted Tomatoes
1 loaf of bread, I went with French because you want it to be wide
5 Roma/plum tomatoes
1 can cannellini beans or butter beans
1/4 cup olive oil, plus a few tablespoons for drizzling
2 cloves garlic
salt and pepper
zest and juice of one lemon
2 tablespoons fresh thyme
large handful basil, finely chopped

I started by pre-heating my broiler. Depending on your oven this may not be necessary but since my old, crazy oven leaves much to be desired, I have to give it some time to get going. Meanwhile, I sliced the tomatoes in half and drizzled olive oil over the top of each half. Then I sprinkled some salt, pepper and chopped thyme on each tomato. I should mention this part came from Rachael. The rest is my creation.
I roasted the tomatoes under the broiler for about ten minutes until the edges just began to char. Then I removed them and set aside.
 Once the tomatoes were out of the oven, I popped in my bread slices. Obviously if you were serving this dish as a side or an appetizer, you would slice the bread into smaller pieces. But since this was my dinner, I used major hunks. I popped the bread under the broiler for about a minute on each side until it was nice and brown. Keep and eye on it though, because the bread goes from nice and golden to on fire in no time flat!
While the tomatoes and bread were roasting, I started working on my hummus/bean spread. Put one can of rinsed cannellini or butter beans in a bowl. Add the 1/4 cup of olive oil, salt, pepper, chopped basil, lemon juice and zest. I used my emulsifier or whatever it is called, but you could also do this in a food processor. I prefer to leave mine slightly more rough so you can see and taste the bits of basil. This stuff is delicious- I have to refrain from eating it plain on a spoon. But it would also be awesome as a veggie dip or on a sandwich as a spread.

 Once the bread is done, spread a generous helping of bean spread on each piece and top with a small handful of arugula.
Cut each tomato half into 4-6 pieces (so a rough chop) and place tomato pieces on top of the arugula. For this size serving, I used 1 whole tomato, or two halves, for each piece. Then I sprinkled a bit of Parmesan on top. By the time I put my crustinis together, they were luke warm, but tasted incredible. I also tried them again last night with the leftovers. I just charred the bread without bothering to re-heat the tomatoes and they were amazing cold. Each time I scarfed down my dinner. This combination is truly amazing and one that I will recreate again and again. The best parts: super healthy, super fast, super easy. It also makes leftovers and I kid you not, I was able to make my dinner last night with leftover in 2 minutes. No exaggeration. So do yourself a favor and make this recipe!

1 comment:

  1. This is absolutely delicious. I am a big fan of sandwiches (and sandwich-like foods) at any time of the day, so I was very happy to have this for dinner. I'll ignore the fact that it came from Rachael Ray. Blah. My only comment is that this dish is best for people who really love tomatoes, because the tomato carries a lot of the flavor (think bruschetta). If you need any more convincing: I recently asked Young Scholar for the recipe to this, which means it was good enough to be memorable and for me to want it again. Nuff said.


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