Isn’t it great when something old seems new again?
Maybe it’s an old shirt you find in the back of your closet that you’d forgotten about and re-discover with delight.
Maybe it’s a hobby that had been set aside when life got busy but now feels like the perfect thing to do on a Saturday afternoon.
Maybe it’s a bean. More precisely, maybe it’s kidney beans.
It’s no secret that I love beans and I generally find kidney beans to be my go-to favorite. They’re accessible, adaptable, and appetizing, for sure, but I’ll admit that I often combine them with the same sorts of flavors in the same sorts of ways. This means that while I always enjoy them, they tend to sort of taste the same each time.
And then this dish happened and my expectation of how kidney beans could be prepared was completely turned upside down.
Instead of my traditional kidney bean thinking, which generally means pairing them with the flavors of Mexico, the Southwest, or sometimes, India, this dish paired the beans up with flavors more reminiscent of Europe, likely France.
I fell in love with this dish and with kidney beans all over again. An old friend, feeling like a new discovery.
Note: I loved this just as is described below and found the flavors of the marjoram, Dijon, and parsley to be flavorful, bright, and absolutely tantalizing. Mr. Move Eat Create, however, felt the dish really came to life for him when he drizzled a bit of white vinegar over his portion and mixed it in, adding a bit of bite to the overall flavor. Perhaps you could try a bit both ways and see for yourself.
Adapted a bit from Wheat Free Meat Free
- ¾ cup gluten free bread crumbs (about 2 slices of gluten free bread chopped in food processor if making from scratch) OR you can sub corn meal if bread crumbs aren’t available
- 1 tblspn nutritional yeast
- ¼ tspn cayenne pepper
- ½ tblspn olive oil
- 2 celery stalks, diced
- 1 medium yellow onion, diced
- 1 smallish head of green cabbage, sliced thinly (about 5 cups shredded)
- 2 small red peppers (I used cherry bomb peppers) plus 1 medium green pepper ( I used Anaheim) OR sub for 1 large bell pepper
- 1 tspn salt
- 2 15oz cans of dark red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 tblspn fresh marjoram, diced
- ½ tspn dried parsley
- ¼ tspn black pepper
- 2 tblspns Earth Balance
- 2 tblspns gluten free flour
- 1 ½ cups vegetable broth
- 2 tblspns Dijon mustard
- white vinegar, optional
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- If making bread crumb from scratch, go ahead and chop those in your food processor. Combine fresh or store bought bread crumbs (or cornmeal) with nutritional yeast and cayenne pepper in a small bowl. Mix well and set aside.
- Warm a cast iron skillet or other large non-stick pan over medium-high heat. Add oil. When warm, add onion and celery and sauté, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes, or until the onion starts to brown and lightly caramelize.
- Next add the cabbage, peppers and salt. Cook, stirring often, for about 7 minutes, until the cabbage has cooked down and softened.
- Add beans, marjoram, parsley, and black pepper and stir well so that all elements are combined. Remove from heat and set aside.
- To make the sauce, melt the Earth Balance in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the flour to the melted butter and cook for 3-5 minutes, or until the mixture starts to brown and become smooth.
- Add the vegetable broth and mustard to the sauce and cook for 2-3 more minutes, stirring frequently until the sauce is smooth and well combined.
- If you were using a cast iron skillet that you can bake your dish in, great! If not, transfer bean and veggie mixture to an oven-safe dish (coated lightly with cooking spray). Pour sauce over beans and vegetables and mix in so that everything is coated. Pat down with the back of your spoon and then sprinkle your bread crumb mixture evenly over the top of the dish. Bake, uncovered, at 350 degrees for 40-45 minutes. Optional: serve with vinegar over individual portions