Date: Sat, 23 Apr 94 17:27:59 EDT
From: muriel kranowski (DOC@VTVM1.CC.VT.EDU)
WHITE BEANS WITH BREAD CRUMBS AND SPINACH
1 lb small white beans
1 cup soft home-made bread crumbs (see below)
lots of garlic - I used 4 big cloves
1 box frozen spinach
salt, pepper, and herbs (see below)
(The night before, I put the frozen spinach in the fridge to thaw.)
Soak and cook the beans in your standard manner, adding a bay leaf
to flavor them as they cook. This batch took about 1-3/4 hours to
get real tender after a 2-hour soaking following a 2-minute boiling.
When they're done, mostly drain them -- the recipe said
to leave them almost covered with their cooking liquid, which I
thought was too wet. Your call. I saved the cooking liquid when I
drained it so I could add some of it back after adding everything else
if it seemed dry, which indeed it did.
I made the bread crumbs by tearing up two thick slices of (previously
unsliced) white bread -- next time I will try whole wheat -- and
whirling them in the Cuisinart. After a few whirls, I added in the
cloves of garlic and pulsed them until the bread was in crumbs.
(What a wonderful aroma from the combined bread and garlic!)
I put the crumb/garlic mix in a bowl.
I put the spinach in a pan (my new Circulon wok, I love it! thanks
to y'all who mentioned it and inspired me to buy it!!) and heated it
up uncovered for a couple of minutes -- didn't try to get it "cooked",
just "hot". I added salt (about 3/4 tsp), white pepper, oregano and
thyme, mixed it up, then pureed it in the Cuisinart -- this was the
olive-oil substitution so I made it as flavorful as possible.
Finally, I added the crumbs and 1/3 cup of the spinach puree to
the beans (in a large bowl), mixed well, added back some of the
reserved bean-cooking liquid, and tried not to "taste" too much
of it -- it was really tasty. I refrigerated it overnight.
Before serving it I warmed it up gently -- you could serve it cold
but I think warming it brings out more of the flavors. It was
well received and I will do it again. It also looked real nice
with the white beans and the green spinach. And since it was (as
usual) the only fatfree item at the lunch, I was glad there was
lots of it!