The Tuscan crostini are a delicious appetizer, hot and accompanied by a glass of good red wine, they will keep you pleasantly company, waiting for a strictly traditional first course. But also as a second course they are not to be underestimated! It all depends on the quantity… and hunger
The ancestor of Tuscan crostini dates back to ancient Roman times, when meat and fish were served on shared trays, from which each diner could draw freely with their hands, while slices of bread were used to collect oils, sauces and pieces of meat. .
In the Middle Ages, food began to be served in individual dishes, but in Tuscany the "crostino" became a way to consume bread until the last crumb, a primary resource for less well-off families. The bread of the day before was roasted, soaked in broth or wine and covered with mince from the poorest parts of the animals, chicken livers or offal with which the traditional Tuscan crostino is still prepared today. Soon even the nobles discovered the goodness of crostini, so much so that their consumption gave rise to another culinary tradition: the appetizer, which soon spread to all European courts.
Tuscan liver crostini
Like all traditional recipes, there are variations depending on the area or from family to family. At the base there is a sauce based on chicken livers or offal, oil, capers, anchovies, onion, which is spread on hot bread. "Silly" bread or salty bread? White or integral? And the wine? Who puts it red, who white, who uses vinsanto or dry marsala. And then again, there are those who wet them with broth, those who fry them and those who leave them dry.
To you the choice. Let yourself be inspired by the moment.
My recipe for chicken liver crostini
Finely chop half an onion and brown it with 2 tablespoons of olive oil. United 350 gr. of coarsely chopped chicken livers. Cook, adding white wine from time to time. It will take half an hour. Chop everything and put it back in the saucepan. Add a spoonful of chopped desalted capers and 3 anchovy fillets. Season with salt and pepper.
Spread the hot dough on slices of toasted bread.
Tuscan crostini with black cabbage and sausage
Black cabbage is a variety of cabbage with a long tradition in Italian cuisine, especially Tuscan. Unlike other types of cabbage, it does not develop a central head, but grows with long, crunchy, curled dark green leaves with bluish undertones. It is also called Tuscan cabbage, precisely because Tuscany deserves the merit of having been able to make the most of it with healthy recipes such as the famous ribollita.
The combination of black cabbage and sausage creates a rich and tasty crostino.
My recipe for black cabbage and sausage crostini
First wash the cabbage very well, then "fillet it". Holding the lower part of the leaves with two fingers, slide off the external parts between thumb and forefinger, throwing away the central rib which would be very hard. Obtain about 200 gr. (net of the difference). Bring salted water to a boil and add the cabbage. Let it cook for 15 minutes then drain. Meanwhile, pour a clove of garlic with two tablespoons of olive oil into a pan. Brown and then add two peeled and chopped sausages. Brown again and finally add the coarsely chopped black cabbage. Let it cook for a few minutes. Cover with the mixture of the toasted bread slices. Pepper and sprinkle with excellent extra virgin olive oil. If you want it more "strong" add flakes of aged pecorino!
It is useless to recommend a glass of Morellino ... it will be a logical consequence!