Friday, March 13, 2015

Yuppie Bean Salad

We have the opportunity to explain the cosmos, plumb the depths of human consciousness, solve the world’s problems, what do we do?  Exchange recipes; this one started when I became dissatisfied with brown rice.   Unless I cook it with meat in a pilaf, no matter how long I boil it, it is crunchy.  I discovered that when I boiled it with beans it became soft.  There are any number of rice and beans dishes, hopping jack comes to mind,  but none that I am aware of that boil the rice and beans together.
Whatever proportion of rice and beans that you prefer.  Boil until the beans are soft enough for you.  Perhaps that is the secret; maybe we have more patience for beans, or maybe the beans beat the rice. If you use red or black beans, you will get a purple or gray glop and if you are American, you might use that in chili. I find navy, pinto, lentils or chickpeas preferable.  Chickpeas taste elegant boiled with brown rice.
If you are one of those obsessive people who determine the exact proportion of water to use so that you do not waste a drop without burning the pan then good on you, the rest of us will boil until the beans are soft then dump it into a colander.
If you are from Wisconsin you will melt cheese over it.  What can’t you put in this?  Cheese, okra, succotash, maybe succotash is OK, green beans, breadcrumbs, hard-boiled eggs or corn. Parsley works, carrots, tomatoes, in the winter if you have a favorite canned vegetable, fennel, almost anything mild.  Then of course add olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
This will keep; it’s a good bachelor dish.  Serve with almost any wine and bread.  Eat as much as you want, it’s good for you.  I've noticed that it seems to help muscle pain.

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