Nov 30th, 2005
I was derailed a bit by the holiday, but I'm finally ready to post the final recipe in my three part opus. Of course I didn't write this down, so I hope my memory is good.
Basically what we've got here is pork and beans, but with an aromatic oniony broth rather than a gooey tomato one. You could make this with any kind of pork really, but I thought the spices on the outside of the pork roast from the fennel/coriander rub really added something to the broth. The beans get creamy, the veggies get soft, and it's really a very comforting winter time dish. I think this was Jim's favorite thing I've cooked recently.
I wanted to use zucchini in the dish, and I'm including it in the list of ingredients below, but mine had turned to slime in the fridge while I wasn't looking, so I had to leave it out. I'll mark zucchini as optional, that should do it. Obviously the vegetables needed here aren't set in stone, they're just what I happened to have on hand. But I do think you need a base of some sort of onion, garlic, shallot, or leek product (I'd say allium but I might get accused of being pretentious. My mom and brother gave me enough crap over Thanksgiving for telling them to put the peeled potatoes in acidulated water. Hey, I like ten-cent words!)
Spice Rubbed Pork & Beansonion, chopped
carrot, cut in small dice
zucchini, cut in small dice (optional)
savoy cabbage, chopped
leftover roast spice rubbed pork, cut in large cubes
dark beer or red wine (optional)
1 can Great Northern or Cannelini beans, rinsed and drained
In a dutch oven or large high sided pan, saute onions, garlic, and leeks in a bit of olive oil. Adding a bit of bacon or pancetta would not be a horrible thing to do at this point. Add the remaining vegetables and saute for 5 minutes or so over medium heat. Add the meat and toss to brown.
After a few minutes add the beans, enough broth to cover, and herbs. Cover and simmer until flavors are melded. You could add a bit of dark beer or red wine along with the broth. Depending on how soupy vs. stewey you want this you may want to raise the temp a bit and cook with the lid off to evaporate some of the moisture.
Serve with a crisp green salad and whole grain bread if you're fancy. If not just eat a bowl while standing in the kitchen and finishing off the remaining beer. I'll leave it to you to decide which path I chose.