I was trying to decide whether to make you black sticky rice pudding with coconut milk or chocolate cookies tonight. But J, scrolling back through my recent posts, said that I haven’t been feeding you enough protein. (That’s a dad talking, there. Fair enough, though, since yesterday’s “recipe” was for ice cubes.)
Thank J, then, for this heartier fare. We’ve been making this dish for more than a decade and it is always satisfying. It’s a quick dinner and our regular answer to the question “how am I going to cook down of some of these greens to make more room in the fridge?”
The core ingredients are, as you may have cleverly deduced, beans (white ones) and greens. The spare supporting cast includes a small onion, garlic, chile flakes, white wine and rosemary. These bit players can be swapped or omitted depending on availability. I most recently made this dish with lacinato kale, but any kind of hearty green will work. I have been known to combine kale, chard, beet greens and radish tops when the fridge is full to bursting.
I like to serve a big bowl of these greens alongside a grainy slice of grilled or toasted bread, preferably spread with a Cypress Grove goat cheese. Now that’s a proper meal.Beans and Greens: First, wash and evaluate your greens. If the greens are tough, like collard greens or old curly kale, you may want to simmer the leaves in salted water for about five minutes before draining and chopping them. If they are fairly soft, like chard or beet greens or lacinato kale, just chop them without cooking them first.
Finely dice a small onion and saute it in olive oil with a minced clove of garlic, the minced leaves from a big sprig of rosemary, and a few shakes of red pepper flakes. Cook until onion is soft, then add 1/2 c. white wine and cook down until thick and syrupy. Add lots of chopped greens and a few cups of cooked white beans (with the cooking liquid if you cooked the beans yourself; otherwise drain and rinse canned beans and add a little water if you want the mixture soupier). Season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until the greens are tender and the liquid in the pan has reduced to a saucy consistency. Serve topped with grated Parmesan cheese if desired.