Kick up your lunch routine with these open-faced sandwiches that feature fetching stacked colour contrasts. More proof that basil and tomato are a dynamic duo. Eating toast was never so exciting.
When nature gives you fresh sun-kissed basil in spades, consider drying some for use in cooking when the winter chill returns. Use kitchen twine to hang a bunch by the stems in a sunny location with good air circulation until the leaves crumble when pressed between your fingers. Pulverize the leaves using a mortar and pestle or food processor, and store in a cool, dark place for up to six months.
1 1/2 cups (350 mL) cooked or canned navy beans, rinsed and drained
2 Tbsp (30 mL) extra-virgin olive or camelina oil
1 cup (250 mL) basil, plus more for garnish
Juice of 1 lemon
1 garlic clove, chopped
1/4 tsp (1 mL) salt
1/4 tsp (1 mL) black pepper
1/3 cup (80 mL) balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsp (15 mL) honey
4 slices whole grain bread, toasted
4 thick slices tomato
4 thin slices fresh mozzarella
Place beans, oil, basil, lemon juice, garlic, salt, and pepper in food processor or blender container and blend until just slightly chunky.
In small saucepan, simmer balsamic vinegar and honey over medium heat, uncovered, until syrupy and reduced to about 2 Tbsp (30 mL), about 5 minutes. Let cool.
Spread bean-basil mixture on toast and top with a slice of tomato and mozzarella. Drizzle on balsamic syrup and garnish with fresh basil.