Get in the Swing of a Good Thing

Sometimes you just have to keep things private. Tiny crimes. Everything, when you are on the subway. Midnight at the fridge. Or when you have a thought that wanders in and makes itself at home in the still of night. Won’t let you go. Won’t rest til it’s spoken and known. That kind of thing.
And you thought I was a bean spiller. Ha.
Let’s just go right to the beans.

Couldn’t be easier, but buy the good ones. Who are you helping not paying another two dollars for top shelf dried beans? My favorite are Rancho Gordo. If you are in the city, they have them at Essex Street Market; if they aren’t at a store near you, get them off the internet. Get a few; they will last and you can give them as gifts.
Soak overnight.
For chickpeas or white beans:
After soaking, refresh in cold water and bring to a simmer. Add a few bay leaves, a half an onion, half a seeded tomato and a long green chile. Give it a pour of best olive oil (flavor) and a good shot of salt. Keep the water short over the top, giving the pot a spill of cold water every once in a while. Don’t worry about that no salt til the end thing; I don’t know who started that rumor, but it is false news. Just be sure your dried beans are relatively young. Dried beans have a life span.

Towards the end, start tasting the pot. The liquid should have condensed to more of a sauce and you should be able to taste a bit of the olive oil and salt. Give it a grind of black pepper. A shot of vinegar can be good if you want to sharpen them, but start with just a capful.
Serve with rice, a zesty tomatillo sauce, chopped green onions and cilantro.
Or go Italian and make a salsa verde to stir in and serve with a wedge of pecorino on the table and the best bread you can find.

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