This is a shameless example of me topping toast with Delicious Things I Like to Eat. Can you blame me? Butter, leeks and white beans--it's a pretty winning combination. Finished with a thin slice of fruity, aged Gouda and some lemon zest, it's not terrible. —Cristina Sciarra
Test Kitchen Notes
I must confess, I was rather skeptical testing this dish. Beans on toast served as an elegant party appetizer? Making the topping is simple and straightforward; simple, easy-to-find ingredients, heaped generously onto thin slices of toasted baguette and topped with a sliver of Gouda and lemon zest. The ‘Anton Ego’ effect hits you two seconds after the first bite. The beans are creamy and marry perfectly with the mild sautéed leeks, the lemon juice and zest offer a hint of tartness. And the Gouda, I’m at a loss to describe what it does to the completed dish, the closest I can get is ‘utterly addictive.’ —Panfusine
about 15 toasts
clove of garlic, minced
leeks, quartered, cleaned and sliced
cups cooked white beans (or 1 15-ounce can)
kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
slices aged Gouda (aged Comté also works, or even Parmesan)
In This Recipe
In a medium saucepan, heat the butter and olive oil over medium heat. Add the minced garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the chopped leek, and sauté for another 5 minutes.
If you are using canned white beans, drain and rinse them. When the leeks are almost done, add them to the pan and heat through, 3-4 minutes. Turn off the heat, and stir in the lemon juice. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Slice a baguette into thin rounds and lay them on a baking sheet. In a 300F oven, bake them for about 10 minutes, or until lightly golden. (You don't want to skip this step--untoasted bread does not hold heavy beans very well!)
Spoon the leek and white bean mixture onto the toasts. Top each with a thin slice of the aged Gouda, and a pinch of lemon zest.
Cristina is a writer, cook, and day job real estate developer. She studied literature, holds an MFA in Fiction Writing, and completed the Basic Cuisine course at Le Cordon Bleu in Paris. She lives in Jersey City with her husband--a Frenchman she met in Spain--and their sweet black cat, Minou. Follow her writings, recipes, publications and photography at theroamingkitchen.com.