All About Beans, Breakfast, Condiments, Growing things, Preserving, Vegan

Jam…. Pickle… Passata…. it’s that time of year again ….

Izzy wizzy let’s get bizzy 🐝 ✨

Greetings from a busy kitchen 💐 💕

I’ve been singularly failing to keep my blog going lately…and that’s because I’ve been madly busy harvesting and storing, preserving and pickling some of my homegrown fruit and vegetables. So cooking dinner has been taking a bit of a back seat!  Baked potatoes all round 😏

Here’s a taster of what’s been happening in my household lately… raspberry jam, cucumber pickle, roasted tomato and garlic passata and an almond vegan cheese made in honour of my delicious Italian tomatoes…… and some of the beans are air-drying for the winter …..

So. Where to start?

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ROASTED TOMATO AND GARLIC PASSATA

Ingredients: Continue reading “Jam…. Pickle… Passata…. it’s that time of year again ….”

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All About Beans, Gluten-Free, Vegan, Vegan Main Dishes

Mexican Bean Stew

I’ve been crazy busy lately, and I’ve been needing serious sustenance… so what better than just another bowl of beans 😉 💚 There’s a recipe for a bowl of beans from just about every country in the world… along with endless regional variations and generational differences.  This is a Mexican recipe that uses gorgeous Ancho Chillies.  They’re not hot, but they’re fruity, mellow and warm.

I made a vat of this, because it’s delicious…and gets deliciouser and deliciouser with re-heating. ❤️

Everyone loves avocados these days, and I realise that here in the UK we’re just a little conservative about how we use them.  That could be because they’re expensive… and we can only imagine the joy of going into the backyard and picking a couple…. and then serving them with everything.  How good must that be💕

So I served this stew with a tomato salsa, white rice, and beautifully ripe avocados.

And it’s good.

Hope you enjoy ! 🌺

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MEXICAN BEAN STEW

for 6

Ingredients: Continue reading “Mexican Bean Stew”

All About Beans, Cooking for One, Gluten-Free, Mediterranean Dishes, Vegan, Vegan Snacks

Mushrooms and Baby Broad Beans in a Garlic, White Wine and Cream Sauce.

This is an easy and delicious little recipe born of the need to do something with my harvest of broad beans. They’re late this year because of the weather but they’re now coming fast.  I love them.  And they’re so easy to blanch and freeze.  My garlic crop was good this year too 🙂

The sauce is french-inspired, has few ingredients and is creamy without the cholesterol 🙂 .  This dish would be great with mashed potatoes or as a posh snack on toast, or fab. with garlic bread!   Trés Français!

Quick and simple to make.  If you prefer not to use wine, then try lemon juice or cider vinegar with some vegetable stock to give the sauce a tang.

Certified GF cornflour/cornstarch will make this dish absolutely gluten-free.

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Hope you like 🙂

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MUSHROOMS AND BABY BROAD BEANS IN A GARLIC, WHITE WINE AND CREAM SAUCE.

 for 1-2

Ingredients: Continue reading “Mushrooms and Baby Broad Beans in a Garlic, White Wine and Cream Sauce.”

All About Beans, Vegan, Vegan Main Dishes, Vegan on a Shoestring

West African Black-Eyed Bean Stew.

I know the sun is shining somewhere … but it sure ain’t here in my bit of the UK!  It’s grey, it’s wet, it’s cold and disturbingly unseasonable. When it’s like this in June, I always get the feeling it could go on all summer long…chilly rainy days…

Mid-summer’s day is upon us..  Difficult to believe, but the days will be getting shorter again… ????

But that’s just about OK … for now … because I did beans.  I do beans a lot.

As far as I’m concerned, a bowl of beans is food for the soul.

This one is a modest, no-fuss, no-nonsense bowl of beans West African style.

Not many ingredients … and no faff at all … but an explosion of rich spicy flavours all the same.

Black-eyed beans are a great little bean.  They’re small, and have a nutty earthy flavour  and they don’t go too soft… and they don’t need too long a soak…

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Here’s a link to one of my beany blogs with tips on beans (click image)

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Tinned beans are fine for this recipe, but I prefer to soak and cook my own.

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WEST AFRICAN BLACK-EYED BEAN STEW

t.b.h. this may well serve 3-4 …particularly if served with rice

but 2 of us ate the lot (after a long wet day gardening)

Ingredients: Continue reading “West African Black-Eyed Bean Stew.”

All About Beans, Vegan, Vegan Main Dishes, Vegan on a Shoestring

Cuban Black Bean Stew

Anyone who has been following this blog, however idly, has probably picked up the fact that I do love beans.

So much so that I am travelling the globe…via the internet mainly…sadly :/ … in search of bean recipes.

In fact, I’ve opened a new blog category… in honour of beans … 🙂

This stew is an absolute classic, with, inevitably many variations.  I’ve pulled this recipe together from several of the variations I’ve found, and as far as I can gather, a vegan version is traditional….even though many recipes include meat.

The flavours are simple and well-balanced: I’ve said it before but I’ll say it again … less is so often more.

One of the many marvellous things about this dish is its beautiful inky colour…. it’s hopelessly moreish and meltingly mellow….

I hope you enjoy it as much as I do….

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Cuban Black Bean Stew – Food For Peace

CUBAN BLACK BEAN STEW

for 4

the beans need soaking for at least 24-36 hours prior to cooking – the longer the better

and the stew needs about 4 hours to cook…but it’s worth it !

Ingredients:   Continue reading “Cuban Black Bean Stew”

All About Beans, Bread, Burgers and Patties, Condiments, Salads, Vegan Main Dishes, Vegan Snacks

Echoes of Ancient Egypt. Broad Bean Patties with pitta bread, minted cucumber salad, pickled cucumbers and spinach. . . . Vegan . . .

broad bean patties + pitta + cucumber salad+ pickled cucumbers + spinach ribbons

Despite controversy, there seems to be reasonable certainty that falafel may well have originated in Egypt, and were made using Fava Beans. Fava Beans are a type of Broad Bean, and are grown in many countries.

In fact, I’ve just sown some at my allotment, as certain varieties over-winter happily, and beat the dreaded blackfly that make an appearance in June. ( But that’s another story).

Another random fact: according to Wikipedia: the word falafel originates from “The word Falāfil (Arabic: فلافل‎), which is the plural of Filfil (فلفل), meaning “pepper”.

Below is my recipe  for Broad Bean Patties, with lots of delicious ingredients and plenty of coarse ground black pepper.  They don’t need veganising, as they always have been, and always will be: vegan.

I love a mezze; so many different flavours and tastes to conjure with so I decided to accompany the patties with my very own homemade pitta bread (which puts all shop-bought pitta in the shade, believe me), a cucumber salad in a minted tahini yogurt dressing, finely chopped spinach, and sharp cucumber pickles.

A feast of greenness.

filled pitta bread

Unlike some versions of Fava Falafel, I have used frozen baby broad beans, primarily for convenience.

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BROAD BEAN PATTIES AND A SIMPLE GREEN MEZZE

Serves 4

Ingredients:   Continue reading “Echoes of Ancient Egypt. Broad Bean Patties with pitta bread, minted cucumber salad, pickled cucumbers and spinach. . . . Vegan . . .”

All About Beans, Growing things, Vegan Ingredients, Vegan Snacks

A Celebration of The Humble Bean.

Tips on cooking beans, with a simple recipe for bean pate.

You’ve just got to love beans!

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It’s autumn here in the UK.  I am lucky enough to have an allotment, and I love it at this time of year, its decked in autumn colour, bathed in hazy sunshine or shrouded in fine mist (or is that rain…?), and still abounding in fruitfulness.  A few days ago, I stripped all the bean pods from the vines.  The pods are slightly damp and bedraggled, and coloured musty shades of brown and yellow.  I brought home a huge bin bag full of them, three different kinds: moonlight runner, scarlet emperor runner and borlotti. They look distinctly unpromising, which is why I am always struck by what I find inside. The pods split open easily, and inside, nestling in a smooth, silky, papery, white sheath, are lines of immaculate, shining, pristine beans.

It seems so improbable.

The task of the next few days is to shuck them into bowls, then leave them in a warmish dry room (but not too near the heat otherwise they will split).  Every time anyone passes, they perform a little ritual, which basically involves shuffling the beans around in the bowls.  It’s quite musical and very therapeutic actually!  To begin with, they sound dull and muffled. As the days go by, the rattle of the beans starts to change, until eventually it sounds like marbles rattling in a glass bowl.  The sound, after a few weeks, becomes absolutely clear and bell-like.

They really are like magic. It’s no wonder that they’re the stuff of fairytales and runes.   Continue reading “A Celebration of The Humble Bean.”