Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Mystery beans

Tonight's Menu

  • spiced pork tenderloin
  • toasted rice
  • okra and beans with bacon and onions
  • green salad "bar"
Today was CSA pickup day, hooray! In addition to loads of other goodies, our box today contained a bag of unidentified shelled beans. I have no idea what they are! They're shaped exactly like a lima bean but are a bit larger and they're brown instead of green. They're not mottled brown, either -- just a uniform brown. They don't look like pinto or fava beans but I have no idea what they could be -- maybe some bizarre variety of a lima or butter bean? Who knows?!

Anyway, I decided to treat them like lima beans and put them in a pan with water to cover, then brought them to a boil and simmered them for a good 30-40 minutes until they were tender. Then I set them aside while I got to work on the rest of the dish.

We got a nice bunch of okra (both green and purple) in the box so I cut that into maybe 3/4-inch chunks. Then I chopped some red onion and bacon (Pederson's apple smoked, which is local to my area, uncured, and certified humane). I put the bacon in a large skillet and cooked it over medium heat until it was almost, but not quite, crisp. Then I added the onion and okra and let them cook for a bit, stirring occasionally, until they were tender and had picked up a wee bit of caramelization. Then I drained the beans and dumped those in, stirring to heat through. Finally I added equal parts (maybe a tablespoon each) of brown sugar and red wine vinegar. I stirred this around until it formed a sweet-sour glaze on the veggies and bacon, then seasoned with salt and pepper and served.

This was SOOOO GOOD, y'all. I have used that same brown sugar-vinegar-bacon combo before with other veggies and it's always awesome, so I was glad to find that it worked great with the okra and beans as well. Even DH liked this and he's a little bit veggie-phobic. I am totally eating the rest of it tomorrow for lunch!

The spiced pork tenderloin and toasted rice were left over from last night, as was the salad (green leaf lettuce, tomato wedges, sliced red onion and shredded carrots).

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