Ruminations and recipes from a small kitchen in a big city.

25.6.14

World Cup spiced broad beans.

Take a kilogram of broad beans, pod and peel them (peeling individual beans is optional).

Cook two chopped onions in olive oil in a large heavy pan for ten minutes, add two scored cloves of garlic, sauté a few more minutes, stirring; and then add two teaspoons of ground cumin, half a teaspoon of cayenne pepper and a dash of ground coriander.

Now add the beans and a cup or so of water. Cook on low heat until the beans soften. Adjust fluid if necessary.

Add half a cup of lemon juice, two or three tablespoons of olive oil, and stir. Remove from pan and process in batches to a semi-smooth consistency.

Reheat when desired, for example, at 2 a.m, when a World Cup game is about to commence and you need food to keep you awake should the game fail to excite. Add chopped coriander or dill for an extra flavour zing, as if it needs it.

Ideal on toasted Lebanese or Turkish bread with zatar. Just swipe the bread through the bean mixture and eat. Also ideal as a dip with blanched green vegetables including asparagus, snow peas, green beans, celery sticks, etc. Also great on baked potato with added sour cream and then scattered with toasted pine nuts and blackened sesame.

Or eat it straight out of the jar when your team loses.

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Anguish this morning in the coffee shop where I have my morning coffee. They had had the Italian flag in the window all last week next to the Australian one. The Australian flag was the first to go. Every four years, he was saying this morning. Every four years they do it to us. It's quadrennial agony. That's what happens when your team is a real contender, or is supposed to be. Australia can lose three games and heads are held high. But the Azzurri ... Why didn't they just attack?, he was saying to customers at large as he made my coffee. Every four years they do it to us. The coffee was perfect. Not a hitch. A professional.

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