Beans, Beans the Wonderful Fruit……


Don’t know if you’ve all heard about this across the pond, but the Brits are up in arms about their “ready meals” (frozen dinners to you and me) being tainted with horse meat. Apparently some brands of beef lasagna had up to 100% horse instead of beef.  Yuck.  Anyway,all of this makes me pause and think about what I’m putting into my body and in an effort to eat as cleanly and healthfully as possible I’m working to incorporate new grains, greens, techniques and spices (no horse meat in sight) into my repertoire.

Beans aren’t new to me, but they’re one of those starches I somehow overlook (perhaps it’s a reaction to the title rhyme above that my sisters and I endlessly sang after we’d eaten beans as kids).  Well, I’ve rediscovered them, chided myself for the oversight and am promptly playing with new ways of making them delicious.

This recipe was a total accident. I’d been thinking about lentils and how you add a touch of red wine vinegar at the end to brighten them up just a tad.  I didn’t have enough lentils to cook as a side dish on hand but I did have some cans of cannellini beans that had been at the back of my cupboard for months. I just used the same principles for them as I would the lentils (well, sort of) and this is what I came up with.  My husband is now begging me to make these for him every chance I get.  Today it was these beans with some left over shredded chicken that he could take to work.  Tomorrow they’ll taste even better because the flavors will sink in.  Really, give them a try, and give yourself a break from the overdone potatoes, rice and pasta on your plate!

Divine White Beans

serves 4 as a side
photo 3

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 shallots, finely chopped

2 cans of cannellini beans, drained and rinsed

1 tablespoon roughly chopped fresh tarragon

1 cup chicken stock

1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

fresh ground pepper

In a saucepan sautee the shallots in hot oil until softened, just 2 minutes. Add the beans and the tarragon and give a good stir.  Crush a few of the beans so the starch comes out and thickens your end result a bit.  Now add your chicken stock and allow this to cook over medium heat until thickened (you do want there to be some liquid still as this will just continue to thicken as it sits). Add the vinegar and pepper and taste.

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