Makes about 2 cups
This simple spread combines the protein of beans along with the goodness of raw garlic to make a delicious, nutritious lunch or tasty appetizer when served with a loaf of crusty bread, radishes and imported olives. I like cannellini beans; however, Great Northern, navy and garbanzo beans also work well. For an additional tang, I sometimes chop imported black or green olives and add a few tablespoons to the spread, or use 1 tablespoon of chopped capers.The spread also is good on bagels or pitas, or on a bed of salad greens, and it travels well. You can substitute savory or rosemary for the sage.
- 2 cups cooked white beans or one (19-ounce) can of beans, rinsed and drained
- 8 to 10 fresh sage leaves or 4 to 5 dried sage leaves
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 teaspoons balsamic or red wine vinegar
- 3 cloves garlic, finely minced
- ½ cup finely chopped celery
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Few pinches fresh red pepper flakes, optional
- Put beans in a bowl and mash about half of them with a fork or a potato masher. If using fresh sage leaves, pile them in a stack, cut the leaves crosswise into very thin strips and add them to the beans. If using dried sage leaves, crumble them into the beans.
- Add olive oil, vinegar, garlic and celery, and toss well. Season with salt, pepper and red pepper flakes, if desired.
- Let stand, covered, for about 30 minutes before serving. Taste for seasoning. Serve at room temperature. If refrigerated, allow to reach room temperature before serving.
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