bean stock

February 8, 2012

bean stock, vegan stock, vgourmet, Ruth Richardson

Hardly a recipe, but essential for good food, deep flavours, and economies in the kitchen. When you are cooking beans, which I hope you do once in awhile, add a few bay leaves, some garlic cloves, maybe a carrot and a stalk of celery. When your beans are done, take out the accoutrements (bay leaves, garlic, carrot etc.) and discard. Then, when you drain the beans, don’t let that gorgeous bean stock get wasted down the kitchen sink! Save it. It’s luscious, and full of flavour, and works wonders in blackened rice, or moroccan tagine, or other bean-friendly dishes. Drain the beans off into a big bowl. Let the stock cool down, and then freeze it in different sized containers to use at your leisure. You won’t be sorry you took the extra 5 minutes to do so. Promise.

P.S. I learned from Cook’s Illustrated the other day that if you add a piece of kombu (seaweed) to your beans while cooking, it makes the beans more tender and flavourful. I think they’re right! Try it out.

blackened rice

March 26, 2011

This is best made along side the black bean stew since the cooking liquid from the black beans is what blackens the rice. It’s brilliant. As Deborah Madison says “The nutritious broth that remains from cooking black beans makes a flavourful, rich broth for cooking rice. Although motivated by common sense not to waste this delicious broth,  I was delighted to find that using the broth this way is also a Mexican tradition.”

2 tbsps olive oil

1/2 white onion, finely diced

1 1/4 cups white rice

2 garlic cloves, minced

1/8 tsp anise seeds (or ground fennel)

2 cups broth from cooked black beans


Heat the oil in a heavy saucepan. Add the onion and sauté over medium-high heat for 4 – 5 minutes. Add the rice, garlic, and anise and stir to coat the rice. Cook until it’s light gold, 3 to 4 minutes, then add the broth and salt and bring to a boil. Cover and cook over low heat until the rice is done, 15 to 18 minutes. Turn into a dish and garnish with  diced jalapeño chiles, chopped cilantro, or pico de gallo.