Bean Stew

“Healthy comfort food” isn’t necessarily an oxymoron. Trust us: this bean and vegetable stew is anything but a penance. It’s a creamy and tasty soup that can be declined year-round using seasonal vegetables, and it’s a great way to empty your crisper drawer when your veggies are about to wilt. So how does an uninspiring bean stew turn into an explosion of umami and a velvety texture? To upgrade flavors and unlock all the aromas, we simply add some Colatura at the very first steps of the recipe. A game-changer.

Ingredients

SERVES: 4-6 people
TIME: About 1 hour and a half (+ beans soaking time)

2 tablespoons of EVOO + more for drizzling
1 large leek, sliced thinly
1 garlic clove, minced finely
2 tablespoons of Colatura
4 cups mixed chopped fresh vegetables (carrots, celery, zucchini, cauliflower, or any root vegetable)
1 teaspoon of thyme
1 teaspoon of chopped rosemary
1 can San Marzano tomatoes (400 grams/14.1 oz)
3 cups Borlotti beans
1 and 1/2 cup of bean cooking liquid
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon of chili peppers in EVOO
Chopped fresh parsley or rosemary to garnish

Preparation

  1. Soak the beans in salted water overnight.
  2. Drain Borlotti and place them in a pot. Fill with enough water to cover by at least 3 inches. Season with salt and bring the water to a boil, then reduce to a gentle simmer.
  3. Cook uncovered, skimming the surface of foam as needed.
  4. Beans will be cooked when they have an evenly tender texture, but still a bite (approximately 1 hour).
  5. Drain the beans, saving their cooking water.
  6. Put the EVOO in a large pot over medium heat. Add leak and garlic, and once they start sizzling pour in the Colatura. Cook until soften (about 4 minutes).
  7.  Add mixed vegetables and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes. Sprinkle the herbs and stir until fragrant (about 1 minute).
  8. Add tomatoes, beans, 1 cup of bean cooking liquid, and bring to a boil.
  9. Reduce heat to a simmer, cover and cook, stirring once in a while, until the beans are creamy and the vegetables are melting away (about 20 minutes). Taste and adjust the seasonings.
  10. Serve and finish by drizzling a little EVOO and garnishing with parsley or rosemary.