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Spring Vegetables and White Beans Scented with Fresh Bay

Thursday, February 11, 2010

10 minutes prep time; 15 minutes stove time

Easily made ahead, this dish is good at room temperature or reheated.

This is a bowl brimming with the fresh, clear tastes of spring: sticks of carrots, slivers of garlic, handfuls of baby arugula, all married with the earthy meatiness of white beans and the citrus scent of fresh bay leaves.

Set these out with a bowl of boiled barley, rice (cook it like pasta and success is guaranteed), or wheat berries, and you have a complete protein, just like eating meat, but for far less money and much, much more interesting flavors.

  • 2 cups Cheater’s Homemade Vegetable Broth (recipe)
    or canned vegetable broth
  • 4 medium carrots, sliced into thick 3-inch-long matchsticks
  • 8 garlic cloves, thin sliced
  • 2 fresh bay leaves, bruised
  • One 15-ounce can cannellini or other white beans, rinsed and drained
  • 3 cups fresh baby arugula, washed
  • salt and fresh-ground black pepper
  • 1 lemon, halved
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup fresh-grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
  1. In a 6-quart pot with a tight-fitting cover, combine the broth, carrots, garlic, and bay leaves. Bring to a simmer, cover, reduce the heat, and cook for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the carrots are tender.
  2. Add the beans, arugula, and salt and pepper, and stir to wilt the arugula into the stew. Cover and cook for 5 minutes, or until the arugula is wilted and the beans are heated through.
  3. Squeeze the juice of the lemon into the pot, remove the bay leaves, and serve the stew with drizzles of olive oil and sprinklings of grated Parmigiano.

Serves 4

From Lynne Rosetto Casper, The Splendid Table

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