Wednesday, March 7, 2012

White Bean and Sun-Dried Tomato Medley

Rachel took the lead on dinner tonight, and I must say she did a fine job.  She now arrives home a little early on Wednesdays, allowing her to get a head start on dinner.  While I always enjoy cooking, it was wonderful to open the apartment door and smell the sweet scent of already-prepared dinner!  

It's almost like this dish knows it's Italian...
White Bean and Sun-Dried Tomato Medley
  • 1 - 8.5 ounce jar sun-dried tomatoes in oil (or a 1.5 ounce package dry sun-dried tomatoes, reconstituted)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 onion, chopped finely
  • 3 cups fresh spinach
  • 1 small bag frozen peas
  • 2 cans cannellini beans (or another white bean), drained and rinsed
  • 1 can butter beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground sage
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
First, remove the sun-dried tomatoes from the jar (save the oil if you like--it'll have picked up great flavor) and chop coarsely.  Next, heat the olive oil and garlic in a large skillet over medium-high heat.  When the oil is hot, add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion becomes tender (about 5 minutes).  Then add the remaining ingredients--including the sun-dried tomatoes--and stir to combine.  Cook for another 10 minutes, or until everything is heated through and the flavors have combined.

Serve over whole wheat pasta as a main dish or alone as a side dish.  Yields 4-6 servings.


The word "medley" describes this dish quite well.  There's a lot going on.  This turned out to be a good thing, as the dish was very good and the variety of textures and flavors came together into one tasty combination.  The sage, as one of the more prominent flavors, works especially well with the beans.  However, I think there's a bit too much starchiness in the dish as we served it: over pasta.  I might make this again as a side dish and leave out the pasta.      
We didn't have any trouble finding the ingredients listed above.  On the other hand, we wanted to add fresh basil to the recipe but the grocery store was out of it.  If you can find it, I'd try stirring in 1/3 cup chopped fresh basil right after cooking and just before serving. 
 Ease of Preparation:   
While I wasn't actually involved in the making of this dish, I can say that the recipe is pretty simple.  Everything goes into one pot.  If you serve this over pasta, I recommend you start the pasta water and bring that to a boil as you begin to cook the rest of the dish.      
Non-vegan friendliness:  
This is a filling, flavorful dish that anyone would enjoy.  If you're feeling adventurous and you're in the mood for pasta, you could try adding tomato sauce to the medley to make it more of a pasta sauce. 

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