Tartine of Bonito Tuna and White Beans
Recipe by Chef David Shalleck
Copyright © 2008 David Shalleck

Tartine of BonitoTuna and White Beans
Tartine di Tonno e Fagioli
Makes about 12 pieces

All but two of the ingredients in this recipe are in a Mediterranean pantry, so a trip to the market for a ripe red tomato and a baguette make the tartine a quick and easy to prepare antipasto or snack. Assemble as close to serving time as possible. The cacophony of flavors and textures is very alluring and your guests will no doubt reach for more! Harissa is a vibrant Tunisian chili paste worth the search. If you can’t find it, substitute by mashing a quarter teaspoon red pepper flakes and a pinch of powdered cumin with the olive oil.

1 jar (12 ounces) white cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1 1/2 teaspoons harissa
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil plus more for drizzling
Finely ground sea salt or fleur de sel
12 1/2-inch thick bias slices French baguette
1/4 cup thinly sliced scallions
3 tablespoons roughly chopped Italian parsley
1 medium red tomato (about 6 ounces)
4 ounces drained Italian, Spanish, or Portuguese bonito tuna packed in oil (about 3/4 cup)

Set oven rack to lower middle position and preheat broiler.
Mash the beans with the harissa, olive oil, and a 1/4 teaspoon salt into a paste consistency. It does not have to be completely smooth. Adjust seasoning to taste. Set aside. Arrange baguette slices in a single layer on a baking sheet. Toast on both sides until golden brown. Set aside. Combine the scallions with the parsley. Set aside. Remove the core from the tomato, cut it in half, then into 1/4 inch slices. Set aside.

To assemble the tartine, spread a tablespoon of the bean paste on the baguette toasts. Place a slice of tomato on each. Carefully break the tuna into 1 to 2 inch pieces and place on the tomato. Top with a generous pinch of the scallion-parsley mixture. Drizzle a little olive oil over each, and finish with a pinch of salt. Serve subito (immediately)!

Wine Recommendation: Fresh, dry, and crisp rosé from the Var, Vaucluse, or Luberon regions in southern France, dry white wines from Piedmont, Arneis or Gavi di Gavi, Sardinian Vermentino, or Falanghina and Greco di Tufo from Campania.

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