Tender White Beans with Red Pepper Flakes
More sunlight in the evenings. Shoots of green grass springing up along with the beginnings of daffodils making an appearance. Only a tinge of snow on the hillside. The spring we crave may finally be here. In Upper Valley and all of New England, the search for and cultivation of color has arrived.
To celebrate, my husband and I took a drive south yesterday, to Boston’s North End, for a change of scenery and for a relaxed day together. It was a mini-vacation—for a few hours we transported ourselves away from work and chores. We cultivated light and color between us by talking about anything other than work and the household—books, movies, fantasies of future travel—the kind of conversations that come easily when away from distractions. We shopped, ate a wonderful meal, and found gorgeous spring colors around us.
This dish of Tender White Beans with Broccoli and Red Pepper Flakes is in part inspired by the kinds of foods we like to eat at our favorite North End trattoria. Delicate white beans are infused with fresh garlic and olive oil. Almost creamy to the bite, roasted broccoli adds both smoky flavors and crunch to the dish. Topped with microgreens or fresh herbs such as oregano, this colorful dish is perfect for a meal on its own. All you need is a loaf of Italian bread, some fruity olive oil, and a bottle of Chianti to complete the meal.
Enjoy the season.
I look forward to seeing you in my kitchen, gathering flavors, soon.