Monday, February 13, 2012

Calypso Beans

Beautiful. Striking.
Of all the delightful items in the grain & bean CSA, I think the Calypso beans are my favorite. I was so happy to cook them up, and especially happy that they retain much of their color and pattern when they are cooked. I was a little worried they would be like red lentils - so pretty dried and so blah when cooked. But the black and white fades to ivory and charcoal grey and is still very striking.

Their texture is creamy and perfectly starchy; Kasey compares them to new potatoes. My batch didn't hold their shape as well, but I think I over cooked them or added too muck soda to the cooking water. They have the less robust flavor of a white bean, but more complex than your average white bean. Our tester bean-pot (beans, olive oil, salt, herbs) was heartily enjoyed by all of the family. Brother-Bug made some comments about eating the cow-beans.

The leftovers made into one easy lunch and one fabulous dinner.

For lunch I re-warmed the beans and tossed them with baby spinach and a generous amount of Gorgonzola. Simple. Divine. Deeply satiating. The warm beans wilted the spinach and softened the Gorgonzola, and the flavors merged in a wonderful way.

Cooked Calypsos - still so striking to look at.

Dinner was more complex than tossing some beans and spinach.

Delicata Squash Stuffed with Calypso Beans

3 Delicata squash (though probably any winter squash would work)
1 cup cooked Calypso beans (if you can't get Calypso beans, try a good white bean)
1 cup cooked brown rice
1/2 cup frozen peas
1/2 cup cream cheese
1 cup grated sharp cheddar
Salt, pepper & herbs to taste.

Preheat the oven to 400. Cut the squash in half and lay open side down in a baking dish with a little water. Cook until easily pierced by a fork, remove from the oven and reduce the heat to 350.

(Note: I always scrape squash seeds and strings after I bake them. The softened squash is far easier to work with.)

While the squash cools, mid the remaining ingredients together (reserving half the grated cheese) in a bowl - adjust for taste and personal desire. If I had been making this for adults, I think some red chili flakes would have been good, but that was not an option for my kids.

Scrape the seeds and strings from the squash. Leave the flesh intact. Fill and then over-fill the squash halves with the bean and rice mixture. Top with the remaining cheese. Place the squash in a baking pan and pop in I the oven until the cheese is all golden and good.

The only bummer here is that the cheese on top hides the beautiful beans.
 This squash is a balanced meal in itself, but a salad makes a nice accompaniment.


In other bean and grain news, I started a sourdough starter with half white flour and half Kasey's excellent whole wheat flour. I've never made my own starter before, so I am excited to see what happens and how it turns out.

1 comment:

  1. I'm drooling here!
    Thank you for the idea in a new meal selection.
    I love stuffed squashes but haven't made any this new year.

    One goal I made for myself this year is to avoid stagnant meal choices.

    Peace, love and beans!