The Siren Song of Summer

There’s a lot going on this week — summer nearing, the last few days of school. The calendar is full, my cooking commitments many.

Savoring my last bite of lunch before the floodgates open

Savoring my last bite of lunch before the floodgates open

As I sit here this warm afternoon eating one of my favorite summer lunches — crusty multi-grain bruschetta with ripe heirloom tomatoes, basil, olive oil, mozzarella and parmesan reggiano — I think of the next several days. It began this morning, as pal Ernie and I tried to go to the amazing, miraculous Santa Monica Seafood to redeem Groupons we’d purchased to make a seafood dinner this evening. More

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I Believe in the Bean

If you’ve read much of this blog, you know that I’m a big fan of beans.

I like all kinds of beans — soupy black beans with garlicky, citrussy Cuban food (that’s the next post, so stay tuned), earthy borlotti beans from Italy (see two posts back), big meaty faba Asturiana beans from Spain, delicate and floral flageolets from France, fermented Chinese black beans, edamame, Mexican pinto beans…

Today I’m writing — or actually talking — about cannellini beans. In the following video, I’ve cooked a pot of these versatile beans, and prepared them four different ways… so you get an idea of how easy they are to make, and how many different things you can do with them. Of these four preparations, I’ve created two in an Italian style, one Spanish and one French. All take no more than a few minutes to make, once you’ve actually cooked the beans. You can even cook a big batch of beans and keep them in the fridge for a week or so, and make different bean dishes on different nights. Enjoy!