It can be challenging; this food blogging thing. I ask myself a lot of questions about what people want to see, what has been done before (Everything by now, it seems!), and how I can share recipes that are approachable yet inspired, or in the very least, an even mix of the two overall. I think you can file this one under the former; a dish that is simple and nourishing, which you can amp up depending on where you want to take it. That’s what I hope, anyway.
If you were to follow me around for a week, you would see me making greens and beans or a version of it once, if not more. What qualifies it as a Sunday Dinner here, is that I incorporated homemade broth and slow roasted tomatoes into it too. Both of those things are simple enough to prep, yet they require the one thing that I usually don’t have a lot of on a weeknight: time.
Food-wise, this is how a lot of my Sundays go. I am chopping and prepping greens, a big pot of something or other is bubbling away on the stove (usually this), and I am making odds and ends (like these preserved lemons or the tomatoes here) that I’ll use throughout the week. All of those ingredients come together to make my greens and beans. Everyone in my family loves this meal. We ate it last-week following an afternoon of leaf-peeping, clearing out our gardens, running around with Sneaks at a local park, and watching the Patriots beat the Steelers on TV. These are a few of my favorite (autumnal) things, for sure.
I for one have been trying to take in all of the fall goodness around us as we prepare for SNOW this coming Thursday! I am also getting a jump on my holiday shopping because if the weather is any indicator, Christmas will be here before we know it! I had the recent pleasure of being a judge in the first-ever AOL Lifestyle Fall Food Awards. Not only did I get to try a lot of new (to me) products, but I was able to check off a few of the foodies on my gift list too!
If you are starting early this year as well – or just want to equip your kitchen for the season – I highly recommend you take a look at the nominees. I really liked all of the products I tried, but two of them stood out for me. I love this beautiful Juliska Amalia Pitcher, for serving drinks and holding flowers. This cookbook meanwhile, is the book I never knew that I wanted until I had it; so many fun ideas for bark, drinks, and more!
GREENS AND BEANS WITH BROCCOLI RABE AND SLOW ROASTED TOMATOES
Notes: Beans and greens are typically made with escarole, which I love, but often have a hard time finding at my local supermarket. If you’re in the same boat – or just prefer another variety of greens – feel free to play around. Kale is excellent here (Be sure to remove the stems and err on a longer cook time to ensure your greens are tender though!), as is spinach if you’re looking for something quicker.
The broccoli rabe is a recent – and not entirely necessary – addition to this classic recipe, but I really like the texture that it gives.
And, if you feel the urge, most definitely top your greens and beans with croutons! I love them with My New Roots’ Life-Changing Loaf.
Slow Roasted Tomatoes:
4 medium-size tomatoes, cut into wedges (about 8 wedges per tomato)
Drizzle of olive oil
Pinch of salt & pepper
Greens & Beans:
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
Pinch of red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon dried rosemary
1 small bunch of greens (about 4 cups lightly packed), such as kale, escarole, or spinach, chopped (if using kale, remove the stems and tough ribs from the center)
6 cups broth (vegetable, chicken, or your favorite bone broth recipe will work)
1 can small white beans with liquid
1 cup chopped broccoli rabe florets
Slow roasted tomatoes (from above)
Grated Parmesan cheese or croutons for garnish (optional)
Roast the tomatoes: Preheat the oven to 250 degrees. Place the chopped tomatoes on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper; it’s fine to space them close together as they’ll shrink up as they roast. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt & pepper. Roast for at least 2 hours, up to 6 hours, until the tomatoes are shriveled and most of their moisture is gone. They should look sun-dried. Remove from the oven and set aside. The tomatoes will keep stored in an airtight container, in the refrigerator, for up to one week.
Make the greens and beans: Heat the olive oil in a Dutch oven or a large stock pot, set over medium heat. Add the garlic, red pepper flakes, and rosemary to the pot and stir, cooking for a minute or so, just until fragrant. Add the greens slowly, tossing to ensure that they wilt as you go. Once lightly wilted, pour in the broth. Bring to a boil, cover and reduce the heat to low. Simmer for at least 15 minutes, up to an hour, until the greens are tender.
Add the beans to the pot (with the can liquid). Cover again and simmer until the beans are heated through, about 5 minutes. Add the broccoli rabe and roasted tomatoes. Cook for an additional minute. Serve as is or topped with Parmesan cheese or toasted croutons.