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I was reading a new cookbook for me.  It was on a Christmas book list.  An Everlasting Meal by Tamar Adler.  I really enjoyed it but I would call it more a philosophy of cooking book rather then a recipe book.  But it truly the way I cook and bake.  There are many times I hear or say "it is time to start beans" or "it is time to start sourdough."  I cook most of what we eat.  Cooking most of what we eat started with allergies, then it was just I was cooking better then anything we could buy, and now it is a combination of frugal (we tip REALLY well and we buy really nice food) and I cook and bake better then anything we can get out.  We still go out for Japanese because I do not really make that yet.  Part of being able to eat this way is a bit of planning, cooking in large portions so there is something in the freezer to reheat, and just taking the time because it is important.  It is really what Tamar Adler speaks too.  None of the recipes inspired me but the philosphy felt like coming home.

So I needed to start some beans.

I picked a couple of handfuls of kale and chard from the garden.  Sauted them with some garlic and onion in a cast iron skillet.  Added a couple teaspoons of salt, a teaspoon of pepper, and pinches of paprkrika, chipolte, and ancho to the greens.  The beans went into the crockpot with vegetable broth.  The greens were added.  The lid was put on.  It was time to walk away and let them bubble.

Hours later (about eight), we had soup.  Many things were done in between, including skating and a fall.  I made toast from the bread ends and we had a lovely meal.  There were many beans leftover so I used them the next night in a different dish (which of course I will blog about tomorrow).  

See how a bit of beans just keeps going.  I could imply it is everlasting but not around here.  We eat beans so the pot always needs to be started again.  Just like we eat bread and the starter needs to be started again.

I would make the suggestion to read Tamar Adler's book.  Then cook some vegetables.  Or a few beans.  She does not really do much bread yet but if you do chose to bake bread, feel free to ask.

Bean Soup

1 pound Hutterite Soup Beans

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 onion, minced

6 cloves garlic, minced

a handful of kale, cleaned and chopped fine

a handful of chard, cleaned and chopped fine

2 teaspoons salt

1 teaspoon pepper

2 pinches paprika (1/16 to 1/8 teaspoon or to taste)

2 pinches ground chipolte (1/16 to 1/8 teaspoon or to taste)

2 pinches ground ancho (1/16 to 1/8 teaspoon or to taste)

6 to 8 cups vegetable broth.

In a cast iron skillet, heat the oil.  Add the onion and the hard parts of the kale and chard.  Let the start to brown.  Add the garlic and the leafy greens.  You want some brown bits and the greens to lose their bulk.  Add the salt, pepper, and spices. 

In a large pot or crockpot, put the beans.  Cover with broth.  Add the onion and greens mixture.  Turn on the crockpot or bring the beans in the pot to a boil.  Turn down to a simmer.  Let both cook until the beans are very soft (when blown on the skins will split).

Serve in bowls with crusty buttered toast and salad.  

Just a lovely, homey meal.  One of those that fills the soul as well as the tummy.  Especially when eaten with loved ones.

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