Recipe courtesy of Donna Hargrove, D.O., FACOG, Nutrition Editor
It’s Monday and you have decided to do a “Meatless Monday”. Here you go! This dish is so tasty it qualifies as comfort food. If you have followed our site and advice about always cooking a pot of beans whenever you are cooking something else, you already have the beans cooked in the freezer or refrigerator. If not, and you are reading this before you leave for work, put some beans on to soak and they will be ready for you to cook when you get home. If you are reading this with no time to soak your beans, it is OK to cheat this one time and use canned white beans. Do not drain the canned beans because you will need the “sauce” you would have had from cooking the dried ones. Adjust for the salt that will be in the canned beans.
Medium sauce pan with lid, chef knife, cutting board, sauté pan.
8 cups chopped fresh greens (kale, collard, mustard, swiss shard, or combination of these), washed, cut in 1 inch strips, center ribs removed
1 cup dried white beans (great northern, navy, etc)
6-8 cups unsalted vegetable stock
3 fresh rosemary sprigs
3 fresh thyme sprigs
1 large sweet onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
½ cup Marsala
½ cup unsalted vegetable stock
4-6 red chile peppers, chopped (optional, but why?)
2 tbsp ground black pepper
1 tsp salt
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Rinse the white beans in cool water and discard any broken or discolored beans. Soak in enough water to cover beans by 1 inch in covered bowl in refrigerator 6-8 hours.
2. Drain and rinse beans prior to cooking. This will remove a lot of the starches that give some people the “bean bloat”.
3. Place soaked beans in a medium saucepan with lid and add enough vegetable stock to cover them by 2 inches. Add ground black pepper, rosemary and thyme springs. Cover, bring to a boil and simmer until just tender, about 1 ½ – 2 hours. Add the salt when done and remove from heat. Remove stems from rosemary and thyme.
4. Heat a sauté pan over medium heat. Add chopped onion and garlic and allow to brown (caramelize – best done in a stainless steel pan or cast iron), stirring occasionally. Deglaze pan with Marsala, stirring to get all the brown bits from the pan. Add the chopped greens and chile peppers, salt and pepper to taste. Combine all in the sauté pan with ½ cup of vegetable stock and simmer greens until just tender, about 15- 20 minutes, depending on type of greens. You may cover them for about 5 minutes to help tenderize them but better if some of the liquid reduces before adding to the beans. Make sure the greens are tender before moving on to the next step.
4. Stir cooked greens and any liquid into the pot of cooked white beans. Bring to a simmer for 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and taste, adjusting for salt and pepper as needed. Allow to rest 15 minutes and serve. Drizzle with a good quality extra virgin olive oil just before serving for an added richness.
Beans can be prepared ahead of time by stopping after step 3, allow them to cool and place in a lidded container held in the refrigerator for several days or placed in the freezer for future use. On the day you want to make this dish, take the beans out of the freezer or refrigerator and slowly bring up to a simmer. Add cooked greens once they are hot. This is a quick and easy way to have a great meal in about 30 minutes. Add a salad and some crusty bread; dinner!
The completed dish also freezes well.
Serves: 4 as a main course or 6 as side dish.
Per 1 cup serving: Calories: 250, Fat: 7 gm, Cholesterol: 15 mg, Sodium: 1000 mg (may be reduced by reducing or eliminating salt, Carbohydrates: 37 gm, Protein: 17 gm.