The amount of crostini that this recipe will make depends on many things: How big your tomatoes are, how thick you slice your bread, how much bean puree you like on each piece. You can also use canned navy or cannellini beans rather than making your own, but with the no-soak method used here, you don’t have to worry if you didn't prepare the night ahead!
Kale and Balsamic Sausage Crostini with White Bean Puree
Makes about 36 pieces
1/4 cup dried navy beans
1/4 red onion (from an onion cut through the root end so the quarter stays together)
2 cloves peeled garlic, divided
1 sprig fresh rosemary
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 slice slab bacon (optional)
About 6 Tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 pint grape or mini San Marzano tomatoes
1 12-ounce package Bilinski's Kale Balsamic Chicken Sausage
1 large baguette, sliced into 1/4- to 1/2-inch pieces
Fresh parsley, minced (for garnish, if desired)
Salt and pepper
Heat oven to 350°F.
Place navy beans, onion, garlic, rosemary, thyme, salt and bacon, if using, in small saucepan. Add boiling water to cover by 1 inch and cover pan with tight-fitting lid. Place pan in oven and cook about 1 1/2 hours or until beans are tender (check after 1 hour for doneness and to make sure beans are still covered with water. Add more water if needed (room temp water is fine.)
While beans are cooking, slice tomatoes in half lengthwise and slice baguette into 1/4- to 1/2-inch slices. Arrange bread on one sheet pan and tomatoes on another. Slice the remaining garlic clove in half and rub cut side of garlic on tops of baguette slices. Place cut garlic clove onto pan with bread. Brush or spray olive oil onto tops of bread, garlic, and tomatoes and salt and pepper to taste. Set aside while beans finish cooking.
When beans are done, remove from oven and heat to 425°F. Drain beans, reserving 1/4 cup cooking liquid. Remove onion, garlic, and bacon, if using, from beans. Pull rosemary needles off of stem and add to beans. Discard rosemary stem.
When oven is up to temperature, place bread and garlic and tomatoes into oven. Bake about 5 minutes, or until bread is lightly browned on top and sides. Remove bread and garlic from oven. Continue to cook tomatoes for about 10 more minutes, or until they are broken down and slightly charred on edges. Remove pan and set tomatoes aside.
To make bean puree, combine beans, reserved cooking water, roasted garlic clove (the one that’s on the sheet pan with the bread slices) and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a food processor. Pulse until ingredients are combined. With processor running, slowly add remaining olive oil until beans are desired consistency. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Slice sausage into 1/2-inch pieces (you should get about 7 slices per sausage.) Add small amount of olive oil to a large skillet and place over medium heat. When skillet is hot, add sausage slices and brown on both sides, about 2 minutes per side.
Assemble crostini: Top each baguette slice with about 1/2 Tablespoon bean puree. Top puree with roasted tomato halves and then with sausage slice. Sprinkle with minced parsley, if desired.