Key Lime & Coconut

My adventures in the world of food & wine

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Shrimp 'n Beans

This dish doesn't exactly have the most sophisticated name, does it? I suppose you could jazz it up by calling it Gamberetti e Fagioli alla Toscana, since evidently this is a classic Tuscan meal. People dig Tuscany -- it's trendy, you know.

Anyway, it's really important to make this dish with dried beans. You can't just start off with canned beans, even though it would cut the cooking time. The reason is that the fresh sage infuses the water that cooks the beans so that the beans themselves taste like sage. Remember to buy U.S. farmed shrimp, not wild-caught or imported. Bottom trawls used to catch most wild shrimp damage sea floor habitat and unintentionally kill unwanted fish and sea turtles. U.S. fisheries are generally well regulated to prevent this kind of damage.

Tuscan Shrimp and Beans
serves 4
  • 2 cups dried white beans (cannellini, navy, pea, Great Northern)
  • 20 fresh sage leaves
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 pound shrimp, rinsed, dried, cut into 3-4 pieces each
  • 2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
Place the beans in a large, deep pot with water to cover. Turn the heat to high and bring to a boil. Skim the foam if necessary. Turn the heat down so the beans simmer. Add the sage and pepper and cover loosely. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the beans begin to soften, about 30 minutes. Add 1/2 tsp. salt and some more pepper. Continue to cook until the beans are very tender, usually at least 1 hour. Add additional water if necessary. Drain the cooking liquid if necessary, then add the garlic, additional salt to taste, and shrimp. Cook over low heat until the shrimp turn pink, 3 to 5 minutes. Drizzle with the olive oil and serve.

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Blogger katiez said...

Simple name, gorgeous dish!
Anything with beans, including shrimp!

4:05 PM  

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