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[personal profile] rooibos and I are working our way through How to Cook Everything (which is a really great cookbook! Buy it if you see it in a used bookstore!) by Mark Bittman, and this is one of our favorites so far. I've modified it a little bit with my notes.

Serves: Four, with some sort of supplemental bread. Without bread, it serves closer to three.

Pros: Mostly unattended. Very few ingredients. Good for people who have time instead of spoons. Can easily be accomplished by someone learning to cook. Uses ingredients that store well. Very little cutting. Can be made up to 2 days in advance.

Cons: Requires blending. Not quick. Requires a little bit of knife work

  • Medium-large saucepan
  • Spoon
  • Blender or food processor
  • Measuring cup
  • Knife
  • Cutting board

    Time: Between 30 minutes and 2 hours, based on the beans you use.

  • 1½ cups of either dried or frozen white beans*
  • 6 cups of water or whatever stock you have on hand**
  • 1 medium onion, quartered
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Optional seasonings: garlic (powdered, minced, or whole cloves), basil OR oregano, flavorful peppers (bits of scotch bonnet or bird's eye chilis are ideal)

    1. Place the beans, liquid, and onion in a large, deep saucepan. (If you are using raw garlic, add at this point.) Turn the heat to medium-high. When it boils, turn the heat down to medium-low and partially cover. Let simmer (small bubbles, but not boiling), stirring occasionally, until beans are soft. Frozen beans will take ~30 here; dried beans will take closer to an hour.
    2. Near the end of the cooking time, season to your taste.
    3. When you are satisfied with the beans and the flavor of the broth, puree the entire soup in a blender or food processor or in the pot with an immersion blender.
    4. Serve hot or refrigerate up to 2 days then reheat to serve.

    * White beans here can also mean navy beans, Northern beans, or black eyed peas. Basically anything in that general size and color family.
    ** We make it with water, and it comes out just lovely. Use water instead of making something with a bullion cube to save on salt and chemicals.
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    cookability: A photo of a set of metal measuring spoons. (Default)
    Cookability: Accessible Cooking

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