Bean Bolognese - my favorite thing I make. Really.
I first made this sometime last year. It is really, really, really good. The recipe is here. I don't really alter it much. I can't find "salad beans," as they call them anywhere. I even tried Whole Foods. I thought I saw a can of salad beans at Publix, but it turns out that is "three bean salad" and includes green beans. No good. I do one of two things for this dish (depending on the amount of time I have) - I use a combination of dried beans, or I buy the canned beans and rinse them really well. I'm kind of scared of bean liquid. It is weird. Am I right?
I like this so much that I double the recipe (almost a necessity since my brother moved in with us and destroys any leftover food that I have. Gotta love 'im.)
First is the chopping - the most irritating part of cooking, of course. I chopped up two small onions (now that I cook so much I have to buy a 3-lb bag of onion, and the bags always have really small onions.) 1/2 cup of organic celery, and 1/4 cup of carrot. Technically, in the doubled recipe, you should chop up 1 cup of carrot. I, however, really despise carrot unless it is in small, unrecognizable pieces and portions. I added it this time because I had some carrot. Usually I leave it out altogether. The result was that I didn't taste the carrot (really small fucking pieces) and it adds a nice crunch.
I used a can each of kidney, cannellini, and pinto beans rinsed really effing well. That basically triples the amount of beans the recipe calls for. I mashed about half of these.
By the way, see my GIANT cutting board? I got it at IKEA a few months back and have never really addressed it in my posts. It is so much easier to use this than a tiny cutting board. However, it is a bitch to clean. A real bitch.
I sauteed the onion, carrot, and celery (like a soup base!) in 4 tb of extra-virgin olive oil, then covered and cooked for 10 minutes.
Then, I added the garlic (about 8 cloves, again, doubled from the original) and 2 bay leaves. Then, slowly I added a cup of wine (it will sizzle and steam a lot if you add in a bunch at once). I brought this to a high boil until the wine evaporated. The recipe says it takes 3-4 minutes, but I think it took closer to 8-10. I don't quite remember.
Then, I added in 2 cans of diced tomatoes (juice included) and about 4 tb fresh chopped parsley. I let this simmer for awhile, allowing the mixture to thicken. It doesn't hurt it if you let it go for awhile.
Then, add in the whole beans and heat through. Remove the bay leaves when finished.
I served over whole wheat fettuccine, garnished with fresh chopped parsley and fresh shredded parmesean. Without the parm, this is vegan.