Ways to cure a snow-filled, bone chilling Monday?
I’ll go first.
Spiked coffee with whipped cream. Like this morning. Currently debating whether it will hurt or help. Leaning towards the latter.
Binge watching 90s shows. I’m picking California Dreams.
Wait though. Also binge watching the Olympics. I CAN’T GET ENOUGH! I’ve traded in my country music star dreams for figure skater dancing wishes for the time being. I’m deathly afraid of heights but want to learn how to luge.
Taylor Dayne pandora station. Doooooo it.
Making these muffins.
See also: manicure, yoga class, magazine reading bender, neon pink flower splurge, taking notes in a Lisa Frank notebook. Hologram unicorns solve all problems.
And crazy good soup that is so thick that you’re not even sure if it’s soup, but it is soup. But so, so, SO thick and creamy that is necessitates a fat hunk of baguette for dipping. Because… BAGUETTE.
I’m about ready to tell all this snow to go take a hike. A long walk off a short pier. All last week I wore the hottest pink lipstick to ward off evil snow demons.
I bought dyed grocery store flowers that turned the water in my makeshift mason jar vase pink and lime green, but brightened up the house nonetheless. I’m super ready for it to be light outside past the hour of 5PM and I’m dying to go outside and walk walk walk.
Instead I’m creating permanent dents in my couch cushions and burning my lap with hot bowls of soup.
This minute I saw this stew it reminded me of mother lovett’s bean soup which I shared almost two years ago to this day. That ranks up there as one of my favorite comfort foods and it’s all because of those darn beans – they get so starchy and thick and creamy, you’d almost think that you had added potatoes or half and half to the soup. It’s a substantial and comforting meal. And besides my irrational fear of purchasing a ham bone, it’s one of my lifelong favorites.
Then I saw this and realized no ham bone required. And saw green stuff and thought “health!” And… also thought “bread.”
This pot is so incredibly full of flavor. A little bit of bacon goes a long way and the anchovies melt into the oil, providing a ton of salty, nutty flavor. The beans fall apart and the greens add a bit of chew. It’s perfect for scooping. Perfect for today!
I’m so in love.
Yield: serves 4 to 6
Prep Time: overnight bean soaking (or at least 4 hours in hot water)
Total Time: 4 hours
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 anchovies, minced
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
2 slices bacon, finely diced
1 sweet onion, diced
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 pound of uncooked cannellini white beans, soaked for at least 4 hours or overnight
6 cups water
4 cups low-sodium chicken stock
1 parmesan cheese rind
1 bunch of kale, stems removed and chopped (about 3 cups)
1 bunch of flat-leaf spinach (about 2 cups)
2 cups of arugula greens, chopped
shave parmesan for topping
a crusty baguette for serving
Heat a large stock pot over medium heat and add the olive oil. Add the anchovies and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper flakes, stirring well, and saute until the anchovies melt into the oil. Add in the bacon, onion, salt, pepper and paprika and toss to coat. Cook until the bacon crisps and the onion softens, about 6 to 8 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook for another minute. Add in the soaked beans, water, stock and parmesan rind. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until the beans are falling apart, most of the water is absorbed and the mixture is thick and creamy. I simmered mine covered for about 1.5 hours, then took the lid off for the remaining time. If at any time the stew seems to be drying out, add more water or stock.
Use a potato mashed and smash some of the beans to give the mixture a thicker consistency. If it seems too thick, you can add a bit of water or stock - however much you'd like to get to the consistency you desire. Stir in the kale, spinach and arugula. Toss in the remaining pepper flakes. Cook over low heat, stirring until the greens are wilted, about 5 minutes. Taste and season as desired, adding more pepper flakes, salt and pepper if you'd like.
Serve immediately with shaved parmesan some crusty bread!
[slightly adapted from bon appetit, february 2014 issue]
that bowl deserves a face smash.