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Quick and colorful soup and salad.

You build them around beans, canned and convenient

HAVING SOARED FROM humble to healthful in the public eye, beans are making more menu appearances these days, and justly so. Not only do they offer fiber, protein, and little fat, but they also come canned and ready to use in quick, nutritious, and good-tasting dishes.

Both the two-tone soup and the colorful salad are striking to look at. The soup gets its hues from purees of canned black beans and canned white cannellini beans, poured deftly to preserve their identities. The salad combines the cannellini with chicken breasts and tomatoes for a main dish.

Black and White Bean Soup

1 large (1/2 lb.) onion, chopped

1 clove garlic

3 1/2 cups regular-strength chicken broth

1/3 cup (2 oz.) drained oil-packed dried tomatoes, minced

4 green onions, ends trimmed, minced

1/4 cup dry sherry

2 cans (15 oz. each) black beans, rinsed and drained

2 cans (15 oz. each) cannellini (white kidney) beans, rinsed and drained

Slivered green onion (optional)

Place onion and garlic in a 5- to 6-quart pan over high heat. Add 1/2 cup water; stir often and boil until liquid evaporates and browned bits stick in pan. Add 2 tablespoons broth and stir to release browned bits; stir often until liquid evaporates and browned bits form again. Repeat step with 2 more tablespoons broth. Scrape browned bits free with 1/2 cup broth; pour mixture into a blender or food processor.

In the same pan, combine tomatoes and minced green onions over high heat. Stir until onions are wilted, about 2 minutes. Add sherry and stir until liquid evaporates; remove from heat.

To onion and garlic mixture add black beans; whirl, gradually adding 1 1/4 cups broth until smoothly pureed. Pour into a 3- to 4-quart pan.

Rinse blender or food processor; add cannellini beans and whirl, gradually adding remaining 1 1/2 cups broth until smoothly pureed. Stir into pan with tomato mixture. Set both pans of soup on medium-high heat; stir often until steaming.

From pans (or 2 lipped containers such as 1-qt. measures or pitchers, which are easier to handle), pour soups simultaneously into opposite sides of a wide, 1 1/2- to 2-cups soup bowl so mixtures flow together but do not mix. Repeat to fill 5 more bowls. Garnish with slivered green onion. Serves 6.

Per serving: 260 cal. (23 percent from fat); 15 g protein; 6.5 g fat (0.9 g sat.); 36 g carbo.; 725 mg sodium; 0 mg chol.

White Bean, Chicken, and Bacon Salad

1/2 cup malt or cider vinegar

1/4 cup regular-strength chicken broth

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil or salad oil

2 tablespoons minced fresh or 1 teaspoon crumbled dried sage leaves

1 teaspoon sugar

2 cans (15 oz. each) cannellini (white kidney) beans, rinsed and drained

4 boned and skinned chicken breast halves (about 1 lb. total)

6 to 8 large leaves leaf lettuce, rinsed and crisped

1 1/4 pounds Roma-type tomatoes, cored and thinly sliced

4 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled

Fresh sage sprigs (optional)

Salt and pepper

Mix together vinegar, broth, oil, sage, and sugar. Place beans in a bowl and add 1/3 cup of the dressing; mix well. If making ahead, cover and chill bean mixture and remaining dressing up to 1 day. Bring to room temperature to use.

Rinse chicken and pat dry. Bring 2 quarts water to boiling in a 4- to 5-quart pan over high heat. Add chicken and remove pan from heat at once; cover and let stand undisturbed until you're ready to check chicken for doneness, about 20 minutes. Cut a small slit in center of thickest part of chicken; if no longer pink, remove from water. If pink, return to hot water and let stand until meat is white in center; check every 5 minutes.

Let chicken cool (to speed this step, immerse in ice water until cold, then drain and pat dry). Cut chicken diagonally into 1/2-inch-think slices. Arrange lettuce on a platter. Spoon bean salad onto 1 section of platter; arrange chicken in another space and tomato slices in yet another. Spoon remaining dressing over tomatoes and chicken, then sprinkle salad with bacon, garnish with sage, and add salt and pepper to taste. Serves 4.

Per serving: 408 cal. (29 percent from fat); 40 g protein; 13 g fat (2.6 g sat.); 33 g carbo.; 453 mg sodium; 71 mg chol.
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No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1993 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:recipes
Author:Weber, Christine B.
Date:Mar 1, 1993
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