When it comes to preparing Spring produce, my favorite executions are always the simplest ones. I love snacking on raw vegetables with a bagna cauda sauce of anchovies, garlic, and olive oil, and my favorite French snack is fresh bread slathered with good-quality salted butter, then topped with radish slices.
Why, I wondered, can't I combine the two? So I did. The result is something akin to a Spring garlic bread. It's soft in the middle and crusty around the edges, with a little pepper from the radish slices, a lot of bite from fresh garlic and Spring onions, and a certain je nais sais quoi, thanks to the anchovies.
I like to slice the bread and vegetables thinly for a delicate bite, or on the thicker side when I'm in the mood for something a bit more rustic. For a Spring snack that's all elegance and simplicity, keep reading.
2 garlic cloves, smashed
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 tablespoon anchovy paste or 6 anchovy fillets
1 tablespoon good quality extra-virgin olive oil
4 ounces unsalted butter, room temperature
1 loaf fresh Italian batard, sliced to your desired thickness
2 to 3 bunches radishes, washed well and stemmed, then sliced to your desired thickness
3 stalks Spring onions, light green parts only, finely chopped (if unavailable, substitute thinly-sliced scallions)
Flaky sea salt, such as fleur de sel or pink salt, for sprinkling
- In a food processor, combine garlic, sea salt, and anchovy; pulse until a paste forms. Add in olive oil and butter. Process until fluffy, smooth, and well-incorporated, about 30 seconds.
- Spread liberally on slices of bread, making sure to cover every corner. (Each slice will take approximately 1 tablespoon of bagna cauda butter.)
- Arrange radish slices artfully on top, and sprinkle spring onions on radish slices. Top with fleur de sel flakes.
Makes about 8 tartines.
- Other, Snacks