A week of beans

January 7, 2010

It’s been a week of beans chez Onepot.  So, if you don’t care for beans and/or feel compelled to go straight to the comments section to explain how they give you gas, you should probably just switch to some babies-and-cookies blog now and come back tomorrow.

Still here?  Onto beans, then.  A $3.71 bag of dry black beans, acquired on Sunday when Mr. Onepot apparently found a deal he could not turn down, has been transformed into three dinners and four lunches for the two of us.

First there was this:

  • 1 giant, slightly intimidating heap of dry black beaks
  • enough water to cover the heap in the pressure cooker
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 carrot, shredded
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 (slightly less than full; I was hungry) jar Trader Joe’s habanero+lime salsa
  • 2 jalapeno peppers + 1 banana pepper, cut into ringlets of fire
  • cilantro and scallions (you know, for prettiness)

Then I…

  1. Cooked the beans in the pressure cooker for approximately 30 minutes post-whistle.  (Of course, this would work in a regular pot as well, but the cooking time will be different.)
  2. Drained the beans.  While they were relaxing in the colander I…
  3. Sauted the onion, garlic, carrot, and peppers in the same pot for 3-5 minutes.  And finally, I…
  4. Added the beans and salsa; stirred; let it all simmer for another minute or so.

Night 1: the beans went into a tortilla with some hot sauce and queso fresco:

Night 2: the beans cuddled with some saffron couscous and rapini stir-fried with garlic and lemon:

Night 3: here they finally are, just gently revived with a can of chopped tomatoes, in a rice + beans interpretation:

After proofreading dozens of pages and writing a dozen more at the Awesome Job That Pays The Bills And Tickles My Brain, I am all out of words.  But let me squeeze out just a handful more to tell you about this:

Thai stir-fry with peppers + cabbage

  • 2 red and 2 yellow bell peppers
  • 1 hot pepper (optional)
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 1 tablespoon Thai curry seasoning
  • 1/2 medium cabbage …or at least I think I used cabbage?

  1. In a wok, stir-fry all vegetables on high heat for 2-3 minutes.
  2. Add curry powder and coconut milk.
  3. Let it all simmer on low for 5-7 minutes.

Best enjoyed over rice, on the night of the first snow.


Surely I’m violating my slippery commitment to locavorism by continuing my love affair with these wrinkled yard-long pods, since I’m pretty certain they are not Chicagoans.  But, between their mysterious good looks and their lovely name–vigna unguiculata! —how am I to resist?


  • ~1lb long beans, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 onion
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic
  • 3 bell peppers (in my case: 1 red, 1 yellow, 1 orange)
  • soy sauce
  • fish sauce (what, this gives you the willies?  skip it, then)
  • 5-6 scallions
  1. Steam the beans for ~5 minutes.  (I know what you’re thinking and yes, I did try this once without steaming them first.  A touch on the stringy side!)
  2. Saute the onion, peppers, and garlic for 2-3 minutes.  Add a splash of soy sauce and a splash of fish sauce.  Keep sautéing for another couple of minutes.
  3. Add the beans and toss it all together.  Stir and toss and stir and toss for another minute or so.
  4. Don’t forget the scallions on top.

And won’t your coworkers be jealous when you pull out such handsome leftovers at lunch the next day?