Accidental Locavore Recipe for Cranberry Beans From Two Continents

by Anne Maxfield on August 19, 2011

Accidental Locavore Fresh Cranberry BeansThe Accidental Locavore had a bunch of fresh cranberry beans, but feel free to use dried. If using dried, soak overnight in water to cover by 1″. The next day, put beans and soaking water in a large pot and cook as below. Your cooking time will probably be longer. No matter whether you’re using fresh or dried beans, you never want to salt them until you’ve soaked and cooked them or they’ll get tough.

Here are two cold (room temperature better)versions of salads using cranberry beans..

For both of them, shell the cranberry beans.

Accidental Locavore Italian Cranberry BeansCranberry Beans Italian Style

  • 1 large crushed garlic clove
  • 3 fresh sage leaves
  • 6 fresh sage leaves, chopped
  • ¼-1/2 cup good olive oil (depending on how many beans)
  • Salt & pepper
  • 1 teaspoon white balsamic vinegar (optional, but it perks up the beans)

Cook the beans with the crushed garlic and the 3 whole sage leaves, in a medium large pot of water, covering the beans by about an inch (do not salt the water!). Bring to a boil, then turn down to low and simmer until tender, about 30 minutes. Drain the beans. Put the beans in a serving bowl, toss with the olive oil, chopped sage, vinegar, salt and pepper. Serve slightly warm or at room temperature. Enjoy! Rosemary would work well here instead of the sage, and I can’t help thinking a little diced bacon might be interesting.

Accidental Locavore Ful MedamesCranberry Beans Middle Eastern Style (a riff on ful medames)

  • 1-2 crushed garlic cloves
  • ½ cup parsley, finely chopped
  • ¼-1/2 cup good olive oil (depending on how many beans)
  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice (or more to taste)
  • Salt & pepper

Cook the beans with 1 clove of the crushed garlic in a medium large pot of water, covering the beans by about an inch (do not salt the water!). Bring to a boil, then turn down to low and simmer until tender, about 30 minutes. Drain the beans, and reserve the bean liquid. Put the beans in a serving bowl, mash slightly with a fork, add some of the bean liquid (it should be almost soupy), toss with the olive oil, garlic, lemon juice, parsley, salt and pepper. Serve slightly warm or at room temperature. Enjoy!

Which is your favorite?

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Nancy Hamilton August 20, 2011 at 8:03 am

The second is the same way I serve Cannelli beans. With those ingredients added, they become Paolo’s beans, and they are a staple here. Now, I’ll try to find Cranberry beans and compare them.
Joan is incommunicado. Tomorrow is the Flea market at the dump, and she’ll have a line-up of fans, looking for errings they couldn’t find anywhere else.

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