After ordering this every time I visit Pizzeria Mozza, I figured it was high time I make it at home. Dropping $9 for this tiny appetizer wasn’t doing anything for my self-imposed “spending diet.”
Nancy Silverton’s recipe via Well Fed
(for the rosemary olive oil)
3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 heaping tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary leaves
(for the white bean puree)
1 15-ounce can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
1 garlic clove, minced
1 teaspoon kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper
(for the crostini)
1/2 inch thick slices of baguette
1 garlic clove, sliced in half
1 cup arugula
good olive oil
aged balsamic vinegar, for drizzling
fresh thyme leaves to scatter over
To make the rosemary olive oil, combine the olive oil and rosemary in a small saucepan over medium heat and bring to a simmer. Lower the heat and continue to gently simmer the oil until the rosemary sizzles. Turn off the heat and let the rosemary steep in the oil for 1 hour.
To make the crostini, place the bread slices on a baking sheet, brush with the olive oil and bake until lightly toasted and golden brown. Rub the oiled side with the garlic and set aside. Alternately, you could brush the bread slices and grill them in a grill pan over high heat. The latter is the method I prefer, as the result is crispy on the edges while the middle is still a little soft. I find baking them just makes them crisp all the way through.
To make the white bean puree, combine the beans, 2/3 cup of the rosemary olive oil, garlic and kosher salt and pepper in a mortar and pestle or in a medium bowl and using a potato masher, mash everything together until everything is combined. The texture should still be slightly chunky.
To assemble the crostini, place a few arugula leaves on each crostino and spoon about 1 tablespoon of the white bean puree in a generous, even layer, over the arugula. Using the back of the spoon, make a small crater in the puree and spoon in a little of the rosemary olive oil and a little balsamic vinegar. Sprinkle with sea salt and scatter with the fresh thyme.