…with blueberry cornbread on the side.
This started out as soup, and ended up as a pasta dish when I asked the man who eats my cooking to go to the store to get some pasta. I wanted something small, like orzo, or pasta mista, something tiny, that would cook up to the same size as the navy beans. He brought back tofette – medium size shells. I added a cup to the soup and saw they were filling with the beans, and diced veg, so decided to add more, then more – until it became a thick tomato sauce pasta dish. The pasta, of course cooks in the juice so absorbs the flavors of the dish.
I cook most beans from scratch – dry, organic beans. So this morning, while making breakfast, I put about 2 and 1/2 cups of dry beans in a pot, filled it with water, then brought it to the boil. Let it boil while I finished prepping breakfast, then turned the heat off and left it till later afternoon when I started making supper. I drained and rinsed the beans, covered the beans with fresh water and put them back on the stove to cook. Cover, bring to the boil, reduce heat, and let simmer for about an hour.
2 1/2 cups of dry beans is about double what you’ll need to yield the 3 cups of cooked beans for this recipe that serves about 6 normal size portions. When I cook beans from scratch, I always cook extra, then keep them in a jar or plastic container in the fridge and use them for salads, or if they’re not going to be eaten in 2-3 days, I freeze them in the cooking water.
For the sauce, add about 1 Tblsp extra virgin olive oil to your favorite soup pot. You’ll need a big one for this dish. I used a 5 litre, stainless steel Dutch oven.
Turn the heat up medium high, and add:
- 3 carrots thinly sliced, n diced
- 1/4 medium onion, minced
- 4-5 small to medium cloves garlic
- 2 stalks celery
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tsp fresh rosemary
- pinch dried thyme
- pinch dried sage
- 1/2 cup of water
Stir and toss with your favorite cooking utensil. For this dish, and this pot, I used a normal sized wooden spoon.
Then reduce the heat to medium low, cover and leave for about 15 minutes. You want the veg to cook together with herbs and spices to make a flavourful base.
Blueberry Cornbread (on the side)
While I waited for it to cook, I made a single pan of blueberry cornbread by halving my recipe for blueberry cornmeal muffins and cooking it in pan. I didn’t, however, halve the quantity of blueberries, and were they ever good! I also added 1/4 tsp of baking soda to the dry ingredients, and double sifted the wholewheat flour. Then, just before popping it in the oven, I drizzled it with liquid honey! Yummy! It made a lovely, sweet glazed top, without it being sugary.
So once they were in the oven, I continued with the bean soup, cum pasta.
Add the beans and tomato passata
- 24 fl oz/720 ml tomato passata. I use bottle tomato passata, and always rinse the bottle with water, which I then add to the sauce. You need to add a total of 3-4 cups water – but not right away. So at this point, just rinse the jar or tin out, adding a cup or two of water.
- 3 cups cooked white navy beans
- 1 veg bouillon cube
- dash Worcester sauce
Turn the heat up, bring it to a boil, reduce to low heat and let it simmer about 30 minutes.
Add the kale and pasta
- 1 bunch kale, chopped
- 3 cups dry tofette pasta shells
- water – as needed
Turn up the heat again, bring it to the boil again, reduce the heat again, cover and let it simmer 10-15 minutes. During this simmering time, stir it occasionally and check that there’s enough water for the pasta to absorb without it sticking to the bottom of your pan. When the pasta is al dente, serve it in shallow bowls. You can offer diced cheese as a garnish.
This was indeed a Yummy supper, even if it was a a bit of a cop-out for the letter Y.