New Discoveries

Post by Paula Jahn, Co-owner and Registered Dietitian, Nourish Northwest

I consider myself a fairly adventurous eater. I love to eat out, but since opening Nourish Northwest, Olivia and I cook too often to justify it. There are always delicious leftovers from cooking classes or recipe testing. Therefore, I am not privy to the current food trends; I’m just not exposed to the new hot ingredients. I remember the sense of wonderment I felt when I discovered purple potatoes, romanesco, and truffles. It’s been a long time since I’ve been introduced to something I’ve never heard of. That is, until Olivia and I took a Nourish field trip to Bob’s Red Mill last week.

Expecting to stock up on both glutinous and gluten-free grains, I was surprised by the aisles of dried beans. It’s a giant bulk foods warehouse!

Gluten-Free from Bob's Red Mill

So, in the spirit of trying something new, we bought cranberry beans and these little beans that look like green Good & Plentys.

Flageolet and cranberry beans

I looked them up: flageolet (pronounced fla-zhoh-LAY) beans, or the “caviar” of beans, are a common staple in French country cooking. They are young kidney beans that are harvested just as they mature. They are tender and sweet with a delicate, slightly buttery flavor.

It’s no secret that I love beans and that my favorite way to cook them is under pressure. It made me sad that I literally had to dust off my pressure cooker after a summer of eating mostly raw or grilled food. Now that fall is here, I can embrace hearty, slow-cooked meals of beans, grains and winter squash.

Today, I put the flageolets in the pressure cooker for about 20 minutes, tossed them with butter, toasted garlic and fresh chopped parsley. So simple and so satisfying.

Sophisticated "caviar" beans

The moral of the story is that I need to seek out new food adventures. It’s not necessary to go to a fancy restaurant to make discoveries in food. The farmer’s market, the bulk section, or a friend’s garden will do to snap me out of my rut.


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