22 February 2009

Chipotle White Beans with Kale and Chard

So, if you haven't picked up on this already, I'm tend to be a creature of habit when it comes to cooking. A few things to know about me:

1. I'm a regular at Haymarket - Boston's big public market - on Saturday mornings for produce, dairy and bread needs. I've maintained this routine largely for 6 years, including going in sub degree weather when they have heaters on. Yup, dedication.

2. I usually cook for the week on Sundays. There's something about it that relaxes me and I love the hours I'll spend in the kitchen on a Sunday afternoon / evening cooking, knowing that I will always have great food to come home to or bring for lunch without any real thinking.

OK, now that that's out, on to the second kale related recipe for last week's eatings, compliments of Heidi at 101cookbooks.

Giant Chipotle White Beans
Adapted from 101cookbooks

1 lb white beans, soaked overnight
kale / chard, mmm greens - finely chopped, about 2/3 cup
chipotle in adobo sauce, with 2 TB of sauce reserved
14 oz can crushed tomatoes
1 cup queso fresco / feta
pinch of red pepper flakes
extra virgin olive oil
2 garlic cloves
1 TB fresh oregano

** Heidi serves this with a cilantro pesto, which I sadly didn't try, after forgetting to buy cilantro at the market ... Highly recommend giving that a whirl though. Visit her site for the recipe.

After soaking the beans overnight, cover with 1-2 inches of water, bring to a boil, then turn down and simmer for 1-2 hours, until they are tender, but still maintaining a big of rigidity. Mine took an hour and 45 minutes.

Once cooked, add a hefty amount of salt to the water so it's a salty broth to taste. Let them sit in this broth for 10 minutes before draining and setting aside.

Now, make your sauce. Put oil, red pepper flakes, salt and garlic in a pan, heat until fragrant. Add the tomatoes and the oregano and stir. Remove from heat, add adobo sauce and diced chipotle (I like it spicy, so I added the chipotle). Toss the kale in the sauce.

Add the beans, then put in a casserole dish. Break up cheese into the beans.

Toast up the breadcrumbs with a bit of oil in the pan. Sprinkle on top of the beans and pop in the oven for about 25-30 minutes.

So yummy. The cilantro pesto then goes on top. I'll have to give that a whirl later.

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