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SpaghettiWestern

Question about dried bean varieties

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29 minutes ago, MelissaH said:

Do you have bean lover friends who live near you, and would be willing to split a membership with you?

 Unfortunaely no. I'm about the only one who actually cooks. The others "assemble" or eat out

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Bean Club is nice and it's one way to get beans. 
You can also just order exactly what you want and get it exactly when you want it. 
It's fun but it's not essential unless you are a very hard core bean freak, like me.  

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I want to nudge myself into more bean cooking so I'm posting about the recipes I make with my bean club shipment and this seems like a good place. 

I used the Marcella beans to make one of Marcella Hazan's soups - White Bean Soup with Garlic and Parsley from Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking

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The header notes for this recipe say, "If one really loves beans, all one really wants in a bean soup is beans. Why bother with anything else?" So true and so delicious! You could take this in any direction by adding sausage, red peppers, tomatoes, a spoonful of pesto....all good, but not necessary.
I used homemade chicken broth instead of the meat broth called for and I did add a bit of extra broth after taking this photo to make it more soup-like.

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Just about my favorite soup in the world is white bean and sausage soup. You brown Italian sausage, and while it drains on paper towels, saute some onion and garlic in the fat. Dice up a couple of carrots and saute them as well. Add a pound of white beans (I love the Alubia Blanco in this, but the Marcella and Tarbais also work well). Add beans and cover with water or broth by two inches; add a can of diced tomatoes and a shake or two of Italian seasoning for good measure. Cook until beans are tender and creamy. Stir in a bag of baby spinach, or a pound of frozen chopped spinach, just until the fresh is good and wilted, or the frozen is warm and dispersed through the soup. 

 

Wonderful with fresh foccacia and a glass or three of Sangiovese.

 

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That sounds outstanding.  Beans and sausages were put together by God.  Not just lentils, either!

 

Over thisaway, I made Ottolenghi's lentil and eggplant stew, which appears in his latest book, "Ottolenghi Simple". 

 

We're at the VERY TAIL end of eggplants here, which is an end I typically seize with joy -- I like eggplant, but it's the ONLY thing in peak season for its particular peak season here in NYC, and for me captures perfectly and totally the problem with strict in-season eating -- so it worked out well.  

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I have a Nigel Slater recipe that calls for dried haricot beans.  Google tells me that translates to navy beans.  I have no navy beans but I have pounds and pounds of Rancho Gordo products.  Could I use Marcella beans?

 

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, JoNorvelleWalker said:

I have a Nigel Slater recipe that calls for dried haricot beans.  Google tells me that translates to navy beans.  I have no navy beans but I have pounds and pounds of Rancho Gordo products.  Could I use Marcella beans?

 

 

My understanding is that cannellini beans are in the same family as haricot and Marcellas are thin skinned cannellinis so they should work, assuming you keep in mind that the thin skins make the Marcellas rather delicate.  

If the recipe calls for a long cooking time and much mixing and it's important to you that the beans remain intact, you might want to pick something more sturdy. 


Edited by blue_dolphin (log)
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13 minutes ago, blue_dolphin said:

 

My understanding is that cannellini beans are in the same family as haricot and Marcellas are thin skinned cannellinis so they should work, assuming you keep in mind that the thin skins make the Marcellas rather delicate.  

If the recipe calls for a long cooking time and much mixing and it's important to you that the beans remain intact, you might want to pick something more sturdy. 

 

 

One way to find out!

 

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Something of interest, maybe?  I've been finding that some of the varieties of @rancho_gordo's beans are so fresh, I have to be very careful about how long I cook them. I like to give a soak of an hour or two, in salted warm water, just to give the beans a head start - but when I did that with a pound of a bean (of course, I've forgotten which variety), they cooked so damn fast on the stove top, I ended up using my stick blender to make a soup, instead of using them the way I originally planned.

 

This is not, by any means, a bad thing. Just something to be aware of.  I also have moved away from using the Instant Pot for beans; once again, timing is important if you want whole beans, and I'm pretty bad at that!

 

 

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I have a bag of 'gaucho' beans I picked up at my local farmers market, probably last summer, because hey!  Local beans!  They are very small (like quarter-inch average), reddish-brown beans, and there is no indication on the bag what sort of cooked beans they make (e.g. do they hold their shape, what sort of texture do they have, what applications are they suitable for). 

 

A google search gives me a couple entries from seed sites that say they are from Argentina, ripen early, and give good yields--nice to know, but not really helpful in a culinary sense. 

 

Obviously I can just cook them up simply and see what I end up with, but I figured I'd see if anybody has experience of this variety before I start experimenting. 

 

Thanks in advance for any insights!

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On ‎1‎/‎3‎/‎2019 at 6:56 PM, JoNorvelleWalker said:

 

One way to find out!

 

 

To reply to myself, Marcella beans worked wonderfully.

 

Now, can anyone describe the differences between RG Flageolet and Mogette de Vendee?

 

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16 hours ago, Miriravan said:

I have a bag of 'gaucho' beans I picked up at my local farmers market, probably last summer, because hey!  Local beans!  They are very small (like quarter-inch average), reddish-brown beans, and there is no indication on the bag what sort of cooked beans they make (e.g. do they hold their shape, what sort of texture do they have, what applications are they suitable for). 

 

A google search gives me a couple entries from seed sites that say they are from Argentina, ripen early, and give good yields--nice to know, but not really helpful in a culinary sense. 

 

Obviously I can just cook them up simply and see what I end up with, but I figured I'd see if anybody has experience of this variety before I start experimenting. 

 

Thanks in advance for any insights!

 

No idea where you are at but they sound very similar to the little pinquito beans that are traditional with tri-tip BBQ in our central coast area..  http://www.westcoastprimemeats.com/santa-maria-tri-tip-recipe   and   https://santamariavalley.com/news/the-scoop-on-santa-maria-pinquito-beans/


Edited by heidih (log)

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Oh, thanks for the response, heidhi!  I am in Corvallis, OR.  And these beans do look like a lot like the Pinquitos, though darker.  I cooked them up with an onion and a bay leaf, and they are a nice, firm bean, nothing extraordinary (though in fairness, they’re pretty old) but good, with a decent bean-liquor.  I shall use them in a soup or a chili-ish something, I think.  

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A new shipment from the bean club should on its way soon so I need to eat up some beans.  

I made Bright Green Falafel made with Rancho Gordo garbanzo beans using a recipe from Shaya. These got tucked into homemade pita and drizzled with a lemony, garlicky tahini sauce.
This recipe calls for about 1/2 a pound of garbanzos and a quart of lightly packed parsley leaves which accounts for the green:

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I used some of the midnight black beans to make Black Bean-Smoked Chile Dip from a recipe in Deborah Madison's Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone. 

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The bean dip was used to make the Individual Nachos and the Quesadilla with Smoky Black Bean Spread and Salsa, both from the same cookbook.

 

 

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