Italian cuisine: White Kidney Beans Tuscan Style
- WTI Magazine #119 Sep 15, 2019
Tuscany is a land of poets, artists and scientists, but also of excellent wine and ancient flavors that we can find in poor dishes such as pappa al pomodoro, ribollita or these white beans called all'uccelletto (small bird). According to Pellegrino Artusi, the name derives from the aromas (in particular sage) that are used to flavor the little birds that were part of the ancient Tuscan culinar tradition. This dish will make you rediscover the true value of the traditional pesant cuisine: the art of preparing what is available, transforming simple ingredients into a delicious dish.
It is a rich and substantial vegetarian side dish that was served in ancient times to accompany meat or game. You can also enjoy it as a main course with a few slices of Tuscan bread to pick up the delicious tomato sauce flavored with garlic and sage. It is also a healthy dish to introduce into your weekly diet. Beans have a marvellous nutritional profile: whilst about 1/3 of their energy comes from protein, the remainder is primarily a high-quality resistant starch, a carbohydrate which passes the length of the gastrointestinal tract and acts as dietary fibre. This type of starch is filling, protects against weight loss, reduces cholesterol, and increases fatty acid metabolism.
CANNELLINI ALL'UCCELLETTO (WHITE KIDNEY BEANS , TUSCAN STYLE)
Total preparation time: 2 days Cooking time: 2 hours Servings: 6
300 g (11 oz) dried cannellini beans, about 50 g (2 oz) per person
3 bay leaves
4 -5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 garlic cloves
5 tablespoons dense tomato sauce
4-5 fresh sage leaves
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1. Sort through beans, discarding any small stones; then rinse the beans under cold running water. Put the beans in a large bowl cover with cold water, and set aside to soak overnight