A bean theme

March 18, 2011


Due to my inability to arise in the morning with anything resembling extra time, I ended up eating beans in all three meals yesterday. I had originally planned on swinging over to Bruegger’s for an everything bagel, toasted, with plain cream cheese, but because I ended up (once again) catching the latest train that still gets me to work only three to five minutes late, that notion went out the window. Instead, I dashed up to the office, sat at my desk for a respectable fifteen minutes or so, and then ordered huevos rancheros from Esquina Mexican Eats, the excellent and pretty authentic restaurant on the first floor. It was then that I realized that with the 15 Bean Cajun Soup that I had brought for lunch, and the refried bean pizza thing that has become a mainstay of my suppers because it’s quick, easy, and inexpensive, I’d be eating beans for every meal. Huzzah!


I have no problem with this and neither do the people around me. I was going to explain why I think that is, but it turns out my hypothesis is misinformed. I will just leave it that I do not experience bean-induced toots. This is a good thing, because I do love beans and I completely appreciate that they are an easy way to boost my fiber intake. They are also cheap and versatile. The bag of 13 Bean Cajun Soup mix cost about $3 and made eight servings. Of course, I added a few other ingredients, but it’s still pretty inexpensive per serving.


The pizza thing I make for supper is just delicious. It allows me to indulge in my love of pizza in a much more healthful way. Onto a whole wheat tortilla, I spread 1/4 cup refried beans and a layer each of tomatillo, onion, and red bell pepper (or in this case, orange, because the reds didn’t look very good). I top it with 1-1/2 ounce pepperjack cheese and bake at 400°F for 18 minutes, and voilá, I have a delicious, fiberful meal.


There is one other tasty recipe that I’ll single out, and that’s the lentil soup that I invented at the beginning of the year when I was sick. I had stayed home from work and had to cope with the fact that I hadn’t gone to the grocery store over the weekend and had very little food in the house. I improvised with a few of the few things I had on hand and ended up with one of the best soups ever!

I like my lentils al dente. So I cooked 1 cup dry lentils for 15 minutes (bring to a boil, then simmer for 15 minutes, no more, no less, and drain, for the perfect lentil). After draining, I returned them to the pot with two cups of chicken broth (from bouillon) and one 14.5oz can of petite diced tomatoes with onion and peppers and the juice. Bring to a boil and serve over an ounce or two of diced fresh mozzarella cheese (you have to use mozzarella because it holds its shape when it melts; other varieties devolve into a gooey, shapeless blob of inconvenience). That’s it. It’s so good. The relative sweetness of the mozzarella perfectly offsets the savoriness of the lentils.

Below is a gallery of other yummy ways that I enjoy beans. Embrace the bean!


One Response to “A bean theme”

  1. […] For actual farmer-grown stock, it is my impression that the best bet is the stalls on the north end between 5th and 6th Streets. And if they don’t grow what they sell themselves, at least they have the courtesy to hide the commercial waxed cardboard boxes and remove the stickers from the items. But I’m confident that their offerings are homegrown. I remembered from a couple years ago that the one family had tomatillos—big, giant, fresh tomatillos. Tomatillos are one of my favorite, newer ingredient discoveries. I gave them a shout-out three years ago. You should try them if you are unfamiliar with them. My favorite way to use them is in my “Mexican” pizza—you can get the scoop on that under the third photo in this post. […]

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