All Truism

Another showcase for scraps and remnants, and another meal where the pressure cooker has lived up to its reputation as a most useful contraption, this dinner was exceedingly simple and extremely satisfying. We had leftover brown rice and a pot of chicken stock from a night or two earlier, so I combined them into a faux risotto of sorts that featured shredded kale, peas, and parsley. I pressure-cooked some navy beans with minced morsels of lardo and duck prosciutto, burdock, turnip, garlic, a small container of the lusciously soft veggies from the last post, and then stirred in tomato paste and fresh herbs from the pots in the dining room and seasoned it all with salt and pepper.

That was it, really–rice and beans. But there was enough going on in each half that they didn’t really seem like settling for less than luxury. The next day, they made for superlative burritos with avocado, more kale, and a couple of homemade hot sauces. It’s nice to eat clean and simple food like this a couple of times a week; it’s good for the body and the planet, and it makes the more decadent meals into special occasions to be gratefully savored. And it uses up the detritus in the fridge before it grows hair.

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  1. Denise | Chez Danisse
    February 12

    Rice and beans done right. Nice!

  2. cookiecrumb
    February 12

    I think that's a really nice meal, but something about the photo makes me want to suggest divided plates. I have a set of antique green glass divided plates.

  3. Zoomie
    February 13

    Good philosophy to eat "clean" meals like this to heighten one's appreciation for the more elaborate, meaty ones. I like that idea.

  4. peter
    February 13

    Denise: Not done wrong.

    CC: I used the silicone spatula I use with the tamis- the curved side of it is pretty close to the contour of the bowl, so it kept them separated nicely while I spooned them in.

    Zoomie: It is helpful to mix things up, I think. And sometimes laziness can be a blessing.

  5. cookiecrumb
    February 13

    No, you plated it beautifully. I'm just thinking of the days when food couldn't touch.
    BTW, I really do have those green glass plates.

  6. Heather
    February 15

    I have similar plates. Mine are for fuddy old ladies who have tea parties. I love them.

    I've been coming around on the pressure cooker thing. It really is as glorious as you say it is. I need to get a smaller one, though – I only have the 23-qt one for canning.

  7. Chef Matt and Megs
    February 15

    Ahhh beans…the staple of any digestive track…love the blog by the way. 🙂 Please feel free to stop by my food blog. I'm @

  8. cookiecrumb
    February 16

    Heather: Too big! Too big! Get a six or eight quart. I even have a couple of skillet-size pressure cookers. Pretty decent for artichokes, but off-limits for beans. Not enough height between the bubbles and the vent.

    (Peter, you know you love this.)

  9. peter
    February 21

    Just talk amongst yourselves. I like to watch.

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