This past weekend I tried another recipe from Heidi Swanson's Super Natural Cooking cookbook. Other than beans, this recipe incorporates another all-time favorite of mine, Swiss Chard, but you could easily substitute spinach in this recipe. This was a great side dish for our Memorial Day hamburgers on the grill.
Heidi's recipe suggests starting with medium or large dried white beans with the standard overnight soaking method. There is always the quick method of boiling dried beans, bring to a boil, rest in pot for an hour and then boil again until cooked, which I use when I cook chick peas for hummus. Unfortunately, when I made these, I didn't have the time for either method so I used organic canned butter beans. I would highly recommend cooking the beans yourself, as the canned beans became a little too soft. The dish still turned out delicious but the beans would have had a crispier coating had I cooked them myself..
The drained beans (I patted them somewhat dry with paper toweling) are sautéed in clarified butter in a very large sauté pan until browned on both sides but still creamy on the inside. Sauteed onion, garlic and chopped swiss chard are added and the mixture is drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with grated Parmesan. So good!
Sautéed Butter Beans with Swiss Chard
Adapted from Super Natural Cooking by Heidi Swanson
Serves 4 as a side dish
1/2 pound large dried white beans, cooked according to package instructions, or, 1 can large white beans such as butter beans
3 tablespoons clarified butter or olive oil
Fine sea salt
1 onion, coarsely chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
6-7 large leaves of Swiss chard (or fresh spinach leaves), large center vein removed and leaves cut into strips
Fresh ground black pepper
Extra-virgin olive oil
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Drain beans and pat off as much excess moisture as possible.
Heat the butter or oil in the largest sauté pan you own over medium-high heat. Have a medium-sized bowl nearby. Add the beans to the hot skillet in a single layer. This can be done in batches if you don't have a large pan. Stir to coat the beans with the butter or oil and then allow to brown on one side for about 3-4 minutes. Turn over and brown the other side for about 3-4 minutes until browned. Salt to taste. Remove beans from pan to a bowl or platter*.
Add the onion and cook for 1-2 minutes, until the onion is soft. Stir in the garlic and cook for another minute. Add the Swiss chard and cook until it just begins to wilt, about 2-3 minutes. Return the beans to the pan and mix together with the onions and chard. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Drizzle with a little extra-virgin olive oil, sprinkle with grated Parmesan and serve.
*The original recipes leaves the beans in the pan for the next few steps but I didn't want them to become over-cooked.
Here is what I've been up to the past week...
I mulched the garden paths and borders and planted annuals in between the perennials. The clematis vines were fertilized and trained up their supports.
I watched the tree peonies open as it is such a spectacular, but brief, show:
The herbs I planted this year are regular and lemon thyme, Tuscan Blue rosemary, regular rosemary, creeping rosemary, basil, French tarragon, and a variety of tomatoes. I planted parsley, chervil, arugula, oregano and more basil in the garden along with lots of edible nasturtium.
The flower containers were filled and planted.
If I disappear for another week, you know where I'll be :)