Scarlet Runner Beans with Sausage and Polenta

Hello, my poor neglected food blog! I haven’t forgotten you, I promise! I just have not been eating so interestingly lately. But I’m working on it!

For instance, several weeks ago I was working my way through the spice shops on Ευριπίδου (a street in Athens), and saw some purple and black beans. I don’t eat beans a ton, and I didn’t recognize them, so I didn’t buy some right away, but the internet told me what they are, and that they’re good, and I was back to the shops! These particular beans turn out to be not particularly strongly flavored themselves, so you could presumably use them to bulk out a lot of recipes, but they have a good texture, and look lovely, so I’m into it.

IMG_8789I actually made this once, and ate it for lunch and dinner the next two days, but wanted to do it again and change the proportions a bit before sharing, so… here we are, two days later, and I’m eating this again. Probably a good sign, for tastiness levels? Actually, though, I think the leftovers might be even better, once the flavors have had a chance to come together a bit more.

Sausage from a butcher's shop on the same street. I really really like this stuff! The label translates to "sausage meatballs" so...that's helpful.

Sausage from a butcher’s shop on the same street. I really really like this stuff! The label translates to “sausage meatballs” so…that’s helpful.

This makes about enough for 2 starving people, or 3 tiny people, so feel free to double as needed.

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup scarlet runner beans (if nothing else, you can order them here, but check the dry goods part of your supermarket)
  • about 1/3 pound sausage, in bite sized pieces
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 cup tomato sauce
  • large pinch dried oregano
  • 1/2 cup dried polenta
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 ounces parmesan cheese, grated
  • lots of water

IMG_8792The evening before, place the beans in a large bowl of water. Soak roughly a day. The water will turn a bit brown, that’s fine, you’re pouring it off anyway later.

They grow significantly!

They grow significantly!

Roughly half an hour before you want to eat, put a medium sized saucepan on the stove, with more than enough water to cover the beans. Bring to a boil over high heat. Add the beans to the water whenever it reaches a boil, and cook 20 minutes.

Purple water!

Purple water!

While you wait for the water to heat, put the sausage in a pan over medium high heat. Cook until browned all over, then add the garlic and cook another minute or two until the garlic begins to brown.

IMG_8805Reduce the heat to low and stir in the tomato sauce and oregano.

IMG_8807Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the beans are ready.

Cook the polenta according to the package instructions. In the case of the polenta I have, combine the half cup polenta with a cup of water and the butter over high heat. Cook until it boils, stirring occasionally. Once it’s reached a boil, it cooks quickly (3-4 minutes). Stir in the grated cheese and remove from the heat.

IMG_8797

Ready to become a base!

After the beans have cooked 20 minutes, try one to see if it’s cooked – you want it tender, not at all crunchy or even particularly firm. When ready, stir the cooked beans into the tomato sauce mixture.

Forgot to take a picture of this the second time through, so this is about twice as many beans as you'll have. The sauce to bean ratio is way better with less beans.

Forgot to take a picture of this the second time through, so this is about twice as many beans as you’ll have. The sauce to bean ratio is way better with less beans.

Serve over a scoop of polenta.

IMG_8808It’s really filling, and delicious! Yay food!

And hello, tomorrow's dinner!

And hello, tomorrow’s dinner!

Scarlet Runner Beans with Sausage and Polenta

Roughly adapted from Inverbrook Farm.

  • 3/4 cup scarlet runner beans
  • about 1/3 pound sausage, in bite sized pieces
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 cup tomato sauce
  • large pinch dried oregano
  • 1/2 cup dried polenta
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 ounces parmesan cheese, grated
  • lots of water

The evening before, place the beans in a large bowl of water. Soak roughly a day.

Half an hour before you want to eat, put a medium sized saucepan on the stove, with more than enough water to cover the beans. Bring to a boil over high heat. Add the beans to the boiling water, and cook 20 minutes.

While you wait for the water to heat and beans to cook, put the sausage in a pan of medium high heat. Cook until browned all over, then add the garlic and cook another minute or two until the garlic begins to brown. Reduce the heat to low and stir in the tomato sauce and oregano. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the beans are ready.

Cook the polenta according to the package instructions. In the case of the polenta I have, combine the half cup polenta with a cup of water and the butter over high heat. Cook until it boils, stirring occasionally, then it quickly comes together and firms up. Stir in the grated cheese and remove from the heat.

After the beans have cooked 20 minutes, check for tenderness. When ready, stir the cooked beans into the tomato sauce mixture.

Serve over a scoop of polenta.

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About sparecake

My name's Corinne, and I like cake, cookies, and chocolate! Also, non-c-things such as ponies, Star Trek, and biking. (Over the summer, my bike glove tans will probably become pretty glaring in some of these photos.) I'll be sharing my adventures in the kitchen. Expect lots of recipes to have chocolate swapped in to replace other inferior ingredients.
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2 Responses to Scarlet Runner Beans with Sausage and Polenta

  1. Mary Kate says:

    Weird beans — but cool. I love beans.

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