I’ve really been into cannellini beans lately. I’ve actually been into beans in general since reading “How To Live Well” by Tamar Adler, in Best Food Writing 2012. (The piece is originally from An Everlasting Meal.) But back to the cannellini. They just have the best texture. Kind of velvety and creamy. They thicken soups really well, and fill you up without adding a ton of calories. They go with a surprising amount of foods, and you can just tuck them into things like this meatloaf with basil. They also seem to be non offensive to my husband and boys. Actually the littlest one really likes them. If you put them out on his highchair tray he picks them up one at a time and actually eats them, as opposed to tossing them on the floor. But I think I’m getting a little off topic again, todays dish came about because I was in the mood to eat more of those wonderful beans.
In How to Live Well Adler notes, ” Tuscans though, make the best beans. They are known in Italy as mangiafagioli, or ‘bean eaters.’ Tuscans believe that frugality is next to godliness and give the humblest ingredients their finest treatment. Tuscan cooks are extravagant with good olive oil, pressed from dark tress, and with vegetable scraps and Parmesan rinds, which along with salt and more of that fine oil, make transcendent pots of beans.”
I was kind of thinking: I want a transcendent pot of beans. So as advised I broke out the olive oil, rounded up the veggies from the fridge, and grabbed a wedge of parmesan rind and all. It was in the fridge when I was looking for veggie scraps so ground beef made it’s way into the dish as well. And then noodles… just because I love noodles.
The only problem is I’m not quite sure what to call this dish. All the noodles, beans, and what not soaked up most of my broth well cooking, so… Not quite soup? Stew? I think Rachel Ray calls that in between state stoup? But that just doesn’t sound appetizing to me. I don’t know maybe it’s just me? Fortunately one thing I can promise you about this dish is that it is appetizing in fact it’s quite delicious. Beef, noodles, creamy cannellini beans, whatever vegetables you have floating around, fresh herbs and salty parmesan combine to form this hearty fall and winter dish. This is proper stick to your ribs cold weather fair. Which in my opinion is pretty much the best type of food there is. After you make it leave me a note and let me know what we should call it!Print