Cranberry Beans with Pinot Noir and Kale Pesto

 

Last year I went on a shopping spree for heirloom beans!

Cranberry Beans with Pinot Noir and Kale Pesto. A delicious and healthy way to get more beans and vegetables in your diet. A little wine is the secret to creating a delicate flavor in this hearty soup. | www.alldayieat.com

It seemed to be all the rage, popping up in magazines and online. I couldn’t resist buying them.

I bought at least 6 different varieties of heirloom beans and never did anything with them. So much for trying them right?

Just looking at my overflowing pantry, I decided their time has come. I needed to use them up!

I think there are a few reasons it has taken me so long to use them. The first is that I wasn’t as interested in plant-based food as I am now.

Another is that there aren’t very many recipes out there that call for these.

I think part of the reason for the lack of recipes, is that they are supposed to taste good enough to eat on their own. Or at least with minimal additions.

And as good as they may be, I’m just not into eating plain beans.

So, after some digging around, I ended up making bean soup with wine!

 

Cooking with wine

I cook with wine every now and then, but this is the first time I’ve used it to make beans.

The heirloom beans I used in this soup are called cranberry beans.

These beans turned out to be pretty tasty. They have a unique flavor and the texture is very soft and creamy.

They are definitely a cut above other beans I usually cook with. (e.g. kidney, black, pinto or cannellini beans)

While the beans make this soup unique, I think the real star, is this kale pesto.

You make it with pecorino cheese, lacinato kale, garlic, and pine nuts.

Pesto!

The end product of that mixture stands as a sharp contrast to the rest of the dish.

The soup flavors are rather delicate and this pesto rounds it out quite nicely.

If one of your goals this year is to eat healthier, this could be a good option to consider.

It’s got plenty of beans and vegetables and tastes very clean and hearty.

While it won’t take you to the moon, it might very well fill you up.

One happy spoonful at a time.

 

In case you missed them, here are some of my other bean recipes!

 

 

Print Recipe
Cranberry Beans with Pinot Noir and Kale Pesto BigOven - Save recipe or add to grocery list Yum
Course Main Dish
Cuisine New American
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Servings
people
Ingredients
beans
kale pesto
Course Main Dish
Cuisine New American
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Servings
people
Ingredients
beans
kale pesto
Instructions
Beans
  1. Using a medium pot, cover beans with cold water and soak overnight. The next day, use the same pot and bring the beans and water to a boil. Then reduce to a simmer and cook covered until tender, ~2 hours. Add salt and remove from the heat.
  2. To make the soup, heat a large pot over high heat. Add the olive oil and pancetta and cook until the pancetta is crispy. Once crispy, remove and place on a paper towel-lined dish. Quickly add the onion, carrot and celery. Cook for 3-4 minutes.
  3. Then add the garlic, parsley and cabbage and cook for 3 minutes. Stirring occasionally. After cabbage appears softened, add the tomatoes and red wine. Cook for 3-4 minutes or until the alcohol smell has dissipated.
  4. Add the beans and their broth, chicken stock, and bay leaf and simmer for 15 minutes.
  5. While the soup is simmering, tear the bread up into large pieces. Brush with the olive oil and toast in the oven for 10 minutes until lightly brown and crisp.
  6. Stir the bread into the soup and continue simmer for another 10 minutes. You can try to break up some of the bread pieces to thicken the soup. Add salt/pepper to taste.
kale pesto
  1. Remove the central rib from each leaf of kale. Roughly chop and place in the work bowl of a food processor with the garlic, pine nuts, olive oil and cheese. Season with salt (optional) and process until smooth.
  2. Serve soup in a warm bowl with a spoonful of pesto in the center.
 

Yo! I'm Pat. I have the appetite of a shark. And with that, I strive daily to improve my skills and satisfy it with tasty food. My site is focused on Japanese cuisine, hydroponic gardening, and points travel. First time here? Learn more about me.

If you like Japanese food and want to learn how to make it, I'm in the process of developing an online course with a planned launch date of December 1, 2017. For details, read what I have planned!!

   

12 thoughts on “Cranberry Beans with Pinot Noir and Kale Pesto

  • May 4, 2017 at 3:50 pm
    Permalink

    I always prefer to cook my own beans but did want to try the heritage ones. I’m on a search, thanks to your delicious recipe, to find cranberry beans!

    Reply
    • May 5, 2017 at 12:34 pm
      Permalink

      Whole foods usually has a good selection otherwise amazon or direct from the farms too!

      Reply
  • January 24, 2017 at 12:07 pm
    Permalink

    Also, that pesto sauce looks delicious. I love pesto. May try to find the ingredients to make it

    Reply
  • January 24, 2017 at 12:06 pm
    Permalink

    That sounds delicious. Can you buy heirloom beans at a regular store ?

    Reply
    • January 25, 2017 at 10:22 am
      Permalink

      i think it depends how well stocked they are. two of the larger suppliers i know of are ranchogordo.com and http://www.zursunbeans.com. I also did a search on amazon and they have them too!

      Reply
      • January 25, 2017 at 11:09 am
        Permalink

        Thank you. I’ll maybe try to ask at the large grocery stores we have down here. I like beans and they are a good substitute for protein without eating a whole buncha red meat. And I do like soups and stews. Thanks

        Reply

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