Friday, January 14, 2011

Lemon and Herb Dutch Bullet Beans

The Lonesome Whistle Farm's description of their Dutch bullet beans says they make their own cream sauce when cooked. In my previous preparation, I'd diluted them into soup, but I wondered if this sauciness could be used to make a bean version of a risotto. One of my favorite risotto recipes is a lemony and herb infused version from Patricia Well's Trattoria. I used this as the inspiration for these beans.

First I sauteed some chopped leeks in olive oil for a mild onion flavor.  

In my slow cooker I combined the leeks, 2 cups of Dutch bullet beans, 4 cups of chicken broth, red pepper flakes, the peel of a lemon, and several springs of rosemary and thyme. I let these cook for about 2 hours, until soft and creamy. To finish them off, I added the juice of the lemon. The beans had an assertive lemony, herb flavor and were delicious served with garlicy sauteed Italian kale and chicken sausages.

Lemon and Herb Dutch Bullet Bean "Risotto"

2 cups (1 lb) dutch bullet beans, or substitute small white kidney beans, rinsed
1 leek, white and light green part washed and shopped
2 Tbsp olive oil
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1 lemon
2 sprigs rosemary
4 springs thyme
4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
salt to taste

Sautee the chopped leeks and red pepper flakes in olive oil until soft. Add the stock, rinsed dried beans, herbs, and the peel of the lemon (in one strip if possible, for easier retrieval). Cook on high in a slow cooker until the beans are soft and have formed a cream sauce, about two hours. Add a little more liquid if it looks too dry, but you don't want the final dish to be too soupy. Finish by removing the lemon rind and herb stems, stirring in the juice from the lemon and salting to taste. Serve with grated parmesan cheese, if desired.

Other heirloom bean recipes:
Minty green flageolet beans
Dutch bullet beans and roasted squash soup

1 comment:

Anne Awh said...

What a pleasant surprise when I looked up Dutch Bullet beans and found your photo of a bag exactly like the one I had just bought at the Eugene Saturday Market! I have just made your recipe, and regret my decision to make only a half recipe because my kids gobbled it all up and now I'll have to make more. : ) It came out great, with the beans holding their shape yet remaining creamy inside. I would recommend making sure that, when you peal the lemon, you use a peeler that doesn't take off too thick a strip, to avoid too much bitter pith.