Bean there, done that

January 24, 2010

So that to-do list hasn’t had very many items checked off yet…but hey, I had a productive afternoon not getting my work done!

Actually I think this a semi-worthy cause: I made the first of three healthy meals I planned on cooking this week. Although I’ve made beans and rice plenty of times, this was probably the most intensive and healthy version to date. Mostly because I used dried beans which had to soak overnight and cook for 1 1/2 hours today, and [organic] brown rice, which takes longer than Spanish rice (or jasmine or basmati) to cook. The best part? On top of today’s leftovers, which will probably become “breakfast burritos” tomorrow morning, I was able to store two additional servings of cooked black beans in the freezer (two cups each, same as a can of beans) that I can thaw and reheat any time in the next few months for different meals.

Black beans and brown rice

Black beans

Organic brown rice

Fresh guacamole

Makin' burritos

The other two recipes I plan on making this week, both from magazines, are kale and white bean soup, and vegetarian shepherd’s pie. Today’s recipe came from Martha Stewart Living.

What’s with the cooking? I hadn’t been doing a whole lot since school started. The inspiration probably arose because I finally bought Mark Bittman’s Food Matters after reading bits of it every time I saw it in a bookstore. Even though it’s not specifically vegetarian, he’s in the same camp as Michael Pollan as far as encouraging people to heavily reduce their meat/ animal-product intake and stick to natural (unprocessed) foods such as vegetables and legumes. This philosophy is nothing new; however, Food Matters has a ton of incredibly simple recipes I knew I’d actually make, which is what set it apart from other books I’ve seen. He’s also big on preparation that makes life easier – like cooking dried beans in bulk and freezing them. I’ve already consulted it several times, since it focuses on basic techniques including various ways to prepare and flavor beans and veggies, create sauces and soups from scratch, and cook comfort foods with healthier ingredients.

2 Responses to “Bean there, done that”

  1. chelsea Says:

    1) yum
    2) how did you find me? i’m usually the one finding people :)

  2. lavietoni Says:

    Ha – me too :) It was through @HappyFeminist on Twitter, while following the talk about the Whole Foods health incentive plan!

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