Italian Greens & Beans Bruschetta is everything you love about Greens & Beans.. served on a tender, flaky cracker. Serve warm or cold at your next gathering for a simple hors d’oeuvre that is sure to impress!
Hors d’oeuvres. Appetizers. Small bites. Tapas.
No matter what you call them, they’re an integral part of entertaining. Now, I should preface all of this by saying that I’m certainly no expert when it comes to hosting lavish gatherings (or just plain old gatherings for that matter).. BUT when it comes to eating, I like to think I know my stuff.
As a self-proclaimed foodie extraordinaire, I know that food can make or break an otherwise fabulous gathering. Let’s face it – food is the glue that holds us all together (literally and figuratively). Not only does good food keep your guests from getting hangry (a BIG hosting no-no), but it also gives your guests something to bond over. Granted, so does bad food – but I’m pretty sure that’s a conversation you want to avoid.
In my opinion, hors d’oeuvres are the ultimate party food because they allow guests to sample a variety of different dishes throughout the course of the gathering. This is great for your guests, but it’s also a saving grace for YOU as the host. Instead of trying to find one dish that satisfies everyone’s taste preferences, allergy restrictions, and food intolerances (a task that is near impossible nowadays), you can provide a variety of dishes and let your guests pick and choose what they would like to try.
Now, you’re probably thinking… “but Karaaaa, I don’t have time to prepare multiple dishes!” And I get it. But I’m here to tell you that the secret to hassle-free entertaining is choosing dishes that are: 1) easy to prepare and 2) large yield recipes.
Bruschetta is one of the world’s most beloved hors d’oeuvres for a reason. It’s totally customizable, only requires a few simple ingredients, and can be tailored to yield as many (or as few) as you would like. Plus, is there anyone in the world who doesn’t like bruschetta?! I mean, come on – it’s basically mini toast (and you all know how I feel about toast).
Today’s recipe was inspired by a contest that I was invited to participate in as a new member of the Recipe ReDux. This is my first month participating in the Recipe ReDux and I’m excited for you to follow along on this journey. I’ll go into more detail about what the Recipe ReDux is in a future post later this month, but here’s a quick overview taken from their website…
As the first and only recipe challenge founded by registered dietitians, The Recipe ReDux is focused on taking delicious dishes, keeping them delicious, but making them better for you.
Each month, myself and the other members will be posting recipes that fit the month’s selected theme. And, from time to time, you may see extra posts (such as this one) related to a contest being hosted through the group – consider it a bonus recipe if you will! At the bottom of each post, I’ll also be providing a link to all of the other bloggers’ recipes so you can check out what everyone came up with.
So, in case you haven’t realized by now, this month’s contest was all about hors d’oeuvres. Our task was to come up with “simple, yet impressive hors d’oeuvre recipes” using Breton crackers. And to keep with the simplicity theme discussed above, each recipe should be able to wow guests, while still only including five or fewer ingredients.
Once again.. Enter: bruschetta.
While bruschetta is traditionally served on grilled or toasted bread, I knew that the light, crispy texture would lend itself beautifully as a base for bruschetta. And boy, was I right. I chose to make this recipe using Breton Original Crackers to let the simplicity of ingredients and delicious flavor of the cracker shine through.
As far as the toppings are concerned, I decided to mix things up by borrowing inspiration from another one of my favorite appetizer dishes – Greens & Beans. Greens & Beans is a traditional Italian dish consisting of cooked escarole (or other greens) and cannellini beans. It’s typically served warm in a broth-like liquid. While greens & beans is delicious on its own, it is in no way, shape or form what one would consider to be “finger food”. Until now.
This recipe is everything you love about Greens & Beans, served on a tender, flaky cracker. It relies primarily on pantry staples (i.e. cannellini and diced tomatoes), making it a cost-effective option for your next party. Plus, it can be served warm or cold, meaning that you can easily prepare the topping ahead of time.
Bottom line: this Italian Greens & Beans Bruschetta will get any party started!
P.S. Can you guess how many times I misspelled the “hors d’oeuvre” while typing this post? Pretty sure I lost track at 17.. or make that 18.
Italian Greens & Beans Bruschetta
|Prep:||Cook:||Yield: 40-50 crackers||Total:|
Italian Greens & Beans Bruschetta is everything you love about Greens & Beans.. served on a tender, flaky cracker. Serve warm or cold at your next gathering for a simple hors d'oeuvre that is sure to impress!
- 1 large bunch of escarole (about 6 cups chopped)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 1 (15 oz) can fire-roasted diced tomatoes with garlic
- 1 (15 oz) can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 (8 oz) package Breton Original crackers
- freshly grated parmigiano reggiano, for topping
- To begin, cut about an inch of core off of the escarole. Wash well and drain. Chop escarole into ½” - 3/4” pieces.
- In a large saucepan with a lid, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat.
- Add half of the escarole and sauté until slightly wilted. Add another tablespoon of olive oil, stir in remaining escarole, and continue to sauté until all escarole is slightly wilted.
- Add diced tomatoes (with liquid) and stir to incorporate. Cover and cook for 10 minutes, until escarole is tender and fully wilted.
- Remove lid, add beans, and stir. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Cover and cook for 3-4 minutes, until beans are heated through. Remove from heat and allow to cool for 5-10 minutes.
- Using a potato masher (or the back of a large wooden spoon), roughly mash the beans.
- Spoon one heaping tablespoon of escarole and bean mixture onto each cracker. Sprinkle with freshly grated parmesan and serve.
The greens & beans topping can be made ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator. Serve cold or reheat before spooning onto crackers immediately before serving.