Slow-Baked Beans with Kale or Other Greens

Slow-Baked Beans with Kale or Other Greens
By Karen Yates, Melrose Depot

(Adapted from a recipe by Martha Rose Schulman, published in the New York Times)

I’ve made this recipe a half-dozen times with different types of greens and dried beans. My favorite version was a once-a-year deal: I harvested a Treviso-type radicchio from the garden and didn’t want to waste the tougher, outer leaves of the plant. Blanching the greens is optional but will remove some of their bitterness.

The original recipe calls for dried lima beans, and a 6-oz can of tomato paste dissolved in 1 cup of water. Almost any type of dried bean will do; I prefer to use up the odds and ends in my cupboard. I also use a jar of tomatoes that I canned last summer instead of the tomato paste and water.

The dish can be prepared through Step 3 and refrigerated, up to four days ahead. To serve, proceed with Step 4 (bread crumb topping) but reheat in a 350-degree oven for 15 minutes or until the beans are bubbling and the bread crumbs are lightly browned.

 

1 medium-sized bunch kale or other “bitter” greens, stemmed and washed well

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 small onion, chopped

1 small carrot, chopped

4 garlic cloves, minced

1 cup dried white beans, washed and soaked in a large pot of water overnight

1 14-oz can of tomatoes (or 1 pint of home-canned tomatoes or tomato sauce)

2 cups water

A tablespoon of dried herb blend (such as herbes de Provence or another combo from The Herb Farmacy), or make a bouquet garni from 2 sprigs of parsley, 1 sprig of thyme and a bay leaf

Salt and generous freshly ground pepper

1/2 cup fresh bread crumbs

 

1. Blanch the kale for 2 minutes in a large pot of boiling, salted water. Drain, squeeze out water and chop the kale into ribbons.

2. Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil over medium heat in a large ovenproof casserole. Add the onion, carrots and celery. Saute for about five minutes or until the onion is tender. Add the garlic, stir and cook 30 seconds until you smell the garlic. Add the tomatoes and bring to a simmer.

3. Drain the beans and add them to the pot. Add the remaining water, the herbs, and salt and pepper. Add the kale, stir well, and bring to a simmer. Cover the pot and bake in the oven at 225 F for about three hours until the beans are tender and creamy (note: small white beans, such as Great Northern, will cook a little faster – check them after 2-1/2 hours). Taste and add salt and pepper, as needed, and a little more water if the beans are dry.

4. Combine 1 tablespoon olive oil and the bread crumbs. Sprinkle over the beans and bake another 30 minutes to an hour. When the bread crumbs are lightly browned, remove from the oven. Serve right away or let cool slightly, then serve.

What to Do With All That Kale? A MUST-Use Recipe!

 By Heidi Rubin, FDC Board President, Marblehead Depot

As an FDC member for more that 10 years, I have at least five go-to recipes that many of my family kale naysayers will eat. Here is one of them. I would like to thank FDC member Christina Pastan for passing this New York Times recipe on to me. It is easy, fast and a keeper!

Recipe By: New York Times adapted by Heidi Rubin
Serving Size: 4-6

Ingredients:
2 bunches Tuscan kale (also known as black, dino or lacinato kale)- So far any kale from the FDC works
1 garlic clove, finely chopped (I use 2-3 cloves)
1/2 cup finely grated pecorino cheese, more for garnish
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, more for garnish
2 lemons, freshly squeezed
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste.

Optional: 2 thin slices country bread (part whole-wheat or rye is nice), or 1/4 cup homemade bread crumbs (coarse); 1/2 cup currants
Directions:
1. Trim bottom 2 inches off kale stems and discard. Slice kale, excluding ribs, into 1/4-inch-wide ribbons. You should have 4 to 5 cups. Place kale in a large bowl with 1 cut up lemon (squeeze lemon quarters before putting in bowl) and cover with water for 2 hours. Squeeze kale and spin well in salad spinner. Place in serving bowl.
2. If using bread, toast it until golden on both sides. Tear it into small pieces and grind in a food processor until mixture forms coarse crumbs. The bread can be replaced with 1/4 cup of currants.
3. After chopping the garlic, transfer to a small bowl. Add 1/4 cup cheese, 3 tablespoons oil, lemon juice, salt, pepper flakes and black pepper, and whisk to combine. Pour dressing over kale and toss very well to thoroughly combine (dressing will be thick and need lots of tossing to coat leaves). Add currants or breadcrumbs.
4. Let salad sit for 5 minutes, then serve topped with additional cheese and a drizzle of oil. If you don’t have time the dressing can be made with all the oil and cheese at the same time. Enjoy!

 

 

Vegetables: It’s what’s for dinner.

I have had gazpacho on the BRAIN. Caps, for emphasis. As in, I mentioned to Michael several times that I might make it, would make it, was planning on making it.

On Sunday, we stopped by a farm stand post-beach, and I bought a pound of tomatoes. These were not just for salads. These were my gazpacho tomatoes.

We also had kale. And Michael was asking for kale chips, again. We really do love them! I know lots of bloggers make kale chips (and green monsters, and overnight oats, and the like…and yes, I like them all!) and it’s KIND OF overdone, but hey. I’m showing mine off anyway.

This gazpacho was inspired by The Curvy Carrot. I like my soups kind of chunky and stew like – even in a gazpacho. Certainly puree yours more if you don’t.

Here’s what I did:

1 pound of tomatoes
1/2 cup cucumber
1/2 cup kohlrabi, sliced into matchsticks
1 ear of corn, with kernels cut
1/2 large avocado, sliced into bite sized pieces
juice of 1 lemon
3/4 cup of water
1 tbsp each: parsley, basil, mint
1/8 tsp each: chipotle pepper, smoked paprika (I used Penzey spices for both)
salt and pepper to taste

In food processor, combine tomatoes and cucumber and pulse until desired consistency. Pour into bowl. Add remaining ingredients, spices and water. Adjust salt and pepper to taste. I let it sit for 30 minutes before serving.

For the kale chips:

~ 6 large kale leaves, destemmed and cut into pieces
1 tbsp coconut oil
smoked salt, to taste
Preheat oven to 400. In a large baggie, throw in all your kale and coconut oil. Seal bag and shake it up to coat all the leaves. Line a baking dish with parchment paper or tinfoil, and invert the bag and spread out the kale.

Cook about 8-10 minutes, and keep checking on them – they go from crispy to burnt very quickly! Remove and top with salt. 🙂

Oregano Fettuccini with Lacinato (Dino) Kale

By Stefanie Timmermann, Salem Depot

I picked up lacinato kale on Tuesday, and rather to my surprise, a simple pan-searing brings out wonderful flavors. Of course, adding garlic scapes didn’t hurt…

A lot of store-bought pasta is extruded, and somewhat dense as a result, whereas homemade noodles are mostly rolled and cut like in this recipe. The fettuccini are incredibly light as a result – I think it’s worth the extra effort for the texture alone.

Because this recipe uses rye and whole wheat, more liquid and salt are needed than in a regular pasta recipe.

For the Pasta
½ cup rye flour
½ cup whole wheat flour
1 cup all-purpose flour
3 eggs
About ¼ cup water
3-4 large sprigs fresh oregano, strip and finely chop leaves (about ¼ cup)
3/8 to ½ teaspoon salt
Pepper

  1. In a large bowl, mix flour, eggs, salt and pepper by hand until a dough forms. Add only enough water to make the dough lightly sticky. Knead the dough on a flat surface for five minutes, adding flour if necessary. It should come off the surface easily and only feel “grippy” in your hands, not really sticky anymore. Knead or roll into a flat shape, distribute oregano evenly on top and roll up, knead to evenly distribute the oregano.
  2. If using a pasta maker, roll out to the finest setting and cut into fettucini strips. Liberally flour both surfaces whenever the dough gets too grippy. Most rollers won’t cut if the dough is too sticky or the rollers are moist. You can also roll out the dough by hand (this takes time but is a good workout!). The dough should be so thin as to be translucent before you cut it into long strips with a sharp knife. Dry the fettucini by draping them over an oven rack or pasta drying rack.
  3. You will get about 6 servings of pasta. Once dry, the pasta can be kept in an airtight plastic storage container in the fridge for a couple of days. Because of the eggs, I would freeze it if I wanted to keep a portion for longer.
  4. Cook the pasta in a large pot of salted boiling water for 3-4 minutes. Coat the pasta very lightly in olive oil or rinse in cold water to prevent sticking.

Topping
The veggie topping is much less time-consuming. For two portions:
1 bunch lacinato kale, cut into ¼ inch strips
4 garlic scapes, cut into ¼ inch pieces
2 tablespoons extra-vigin olive oil
Salt

  1. Heat sharply and sear all ingredients in a large skillet, reduce heat and cook until scapes are tender but firm, about 10 minutes. Toss with the pasta.
  2. I grated a generous helping of the wonderful fiddlehead fern cheese from the cheese share on top. Add a tossed salad and it’s a complete dinner meal.

Beauty Food

I think of this greens and quinoa salad as a beauty food. Kale and broccoli are wonderful for your skin: it’s all the Vitamin C, A, and K. Add in some quinoa and all those happy amino acid chains, and you have a lovely lunch. I chopped up some tomatoes for lycopene, and a little mozzarella for….fun. But let’s call it calcium.

  • 1 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1 cup kale, deveined and cut into strips
  • 1 cup broccoli florets
  • 1 large tomato, chopped
  • 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese, cut into small pieces
  • 1 good fistful of basil (I have really no idea how much that is), julienned
  • 1 tbsp really good balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • salt & pepper, to taste
Bring a pot of water to a boil and add kale and broccoli. You’ll want to blanch for one minute, then drain. I rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process (mainly because I never have ice cubes for an ice bath). Combine quinoa, kale, broccoli, tomatoes, basil and mozzarella. In a small bowl, whisk together balsamic vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper. Pour over salad. Makes 2 servings.