amazing maple beans

November 26, 2011

Every once in awhile we eat at Ruby Watchco since they are so good at accommodating other-than-meat-eating-tastes. Once they served me maple baked beans which were to die for. I’ve been dreaming of those beans ever since. Finally the other night I experimented and landed on a dish that made me smile with delight. Stew up this pot of amazing maple beans and be amazed – sweet, delectable, nourishing, and great on their own or as a side dish to grilled veggies and steamed greens. (Psssttt … the secret is Kozlik’s Amazing Maple Mustard. Pass it on.)

4 1/2 cups cooked beans, navy, kidney, adzuki, or any other type

3 tbsps olive oil

1 large sweet onion

3 tbsps blackstrap molasses

3 tbsps maple syrup

3 tbsps Kozlik’s Amazing Maple Mustard

2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

I cup stewed tomatoes

1 tsp sea salt

If cooking your own beans, soak for 8 hours, drain, place in a pot with fresh water, and cook until done. Then drain and set aside. If not, rinse and drain canned bean and set aside.

Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a heavy-bottomed pot or dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion and sauté until tender and starting to brown. Add molasses, maple syrup, mustard, apple cider vinegar and tomatoes. Bring to a boil and then simmer for 20 – 30 minutes until flavours meld and the mixture reduces slightly. Add beans and sea salt to taste. Let simmer for another 20 – 30 minutes until beans are incorporated into the flavours of this dish and the house is filled with smell and you can’t wait any longer to eat them.

Serve in a big bowl with a hunk of hearty whole grain bread or as a side to steamed greens and grilled veggies.

rustic bean cassoulet

October 25, 2010

I was at a slow food event the other day where they paired chefs with producers in the name of fantastic slow food creations. A lot of the food looked out of this world but, sadly, there was so much that I couldn’t try because it was all meat meat meat. Mostly pork for some reason – pulled pork, stewed pork, deep fried pork. Thank goodness for Brad Long who made a wonderful bean dish with wild chanterelle mushrooms. I asked him for some tips, tried to commit them to memory, and came up with my own version last night. Gotta say, it rocked.

1 large onion, chopped

3 cloves of garlic, minced

good quality organic olive oil

herbs of your choice but you might want to head towards rosemary, marjoram, thyme, and parsley, chopped

dried mushrooms of your choice (or fresh if you have them but sometimes it’s hard to find fresh chanterelles, porcini etc.)

1 cup white wine

slow roasted tomatoes

beans (navy, adzuki, black turtle), cooked

salt and pepper

Cook beans of your choice and reserve. Heat up white wine in a small pot on the stove. Add dried mushrooms to rehydrate. Set aside.

Heat olive oil in a heavy dutch oven on medium-high. Add onions and saute until nicely browned. Add garlic and saute until fragrant. Add herbs and saute until the kitchen is filled with the smell. Pour wine off the mushrooms and add to the dutch oven. Bring to a boil and let the wine reduce. Add reserved mushrooms. Add slow roasted tomatoes and let simmer for 5 – 10 minutes until the flavours start to blend. If the mixture gets too dry, add some additional wine and reduce. Add cooked beans. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Serve immediately with parsley garnish, hearty bread, and a glass of red wine. Let me tell you, it hits the spot on a rainy, grey, fall night. And if you’re eating it as leftovers the next day, you can always add green beans, cauliflower, or other veggies as seen in the photo above. Thanks Brad!

flageolet à la provençal

September 20, 2010

Tonight was “ode to the flageolet.” I made two dishes. This one, and Flageolet Soubise. Both were awesome. And hearty. And healthy. And full of organic goodness. Here’s how it’s done:

3 tbsp. good quality olive oil

3 large shallots, sliced

1 large garlic clove, minced

2 fresh tomatoes, diced

28 oz. flageolet beans, cooked

1/3 cup white or red wine, whatever you happen to have open

1 tsp sea salt

Freshly ground pepper

sprigs of thyme or rosemary

In a non stick, fry pan, heat the olive oil, add the shallots and garlic, sauté on medium heat until the shallots are soft but not brown. Add the diced tomatoes along with the flageolet beans and the wine. Continue to cook for a further 5 minutes or until the beans are not soupy.

Add the sea salt, pepper and herbs. Taste for seasoning.

Serve. Eat. Enjoy.