I just managed to get my Borlotti Beans in before the weather turned all wet and soggy (it’s tipping it down outside as I type). I harvested the lot, probably about 25 – 30 pods from one wigwam and only four plants. Apparently, that’s not bad in Borlotti terms as they tend to yield less than the same number of Runner Bean plants.
About 75% of these were perfect for fresh eating (the best way to save that lovely, Potatoey-and-yet-also-Beany flavour). You can dry them, of course, and use them over winter but I wanted to use them fresh in order to ‘really’ taste them, if you know what I mean.
The only problem was that, since I’ve never grown Borlotti Beans before my stash of recipes for this type of vegetable amounted to, erm, none. So I was stuck with a beautiful crop of Beans but not a clue what to do with them. I went on the hunt for some recipes and found such a lovely selection that I thought I’d share them here – in case you were wondering what to do with yours too. Oh and also, don’t forget to cook your beans before using them in a recipe. Simply boil them for 20 minutes until they are soft.
- Fresh Borlotti Bean, Tiger Prawn and Chorizo Horneado – I’m not a big fan of Chorizo so might replace this with sausage or similar but this just looked gorgeous and very hearty on an Autumn’s day too.
- Borlotti Beans braised with Onion, Tomato and Cime di Rapa – for those of you at a loss to know what Cime di Rapa is (me included) it is described here as being a Brassica a little like the
leaves of Turnip. You could maybe substitue Chard or Cabbage leaves but this would give the dish a different flavour.
- Borlotti Bean Mole with Roast Winter Squash – one thing I like about this recipe is that it includes chocolate. Beans – good, Squash – good, Chocolate – good!
- Sausages with Fresh Borlotti Beans – As I suspected Borlotti Beans go well with sausages. Delicious magazine confirms all my suspicions.
- Borlotti Beans in Tomato Sauce with Creamy Polenta – ooh creamy polenta sounds like a good accompaniment to my Beans. This recipe is from a book called Heirloom Beans which looks pretty darn good too.
- Cranberry Bean “Fool Mudammas” – apparently Borlotti Beans are called Cranberry Beans in certain parts of the world – I did not know that! This recipe looks so fresh and crispy with its layer of Radish on top. Great to go with something warm and spicy.
- Cowboy Beans – one for the kids. These pot beans can be cooked the day before and warmed up on the day. You could even make them on a camping trip over the fire.
- Borlotti Bean, Chilli and Pine Nut Bake – A good bake is always a winner in our house. And with the added benefit of pine nuts this is guaranteed to go down well.
- Italian Bean and Tuna Salad – this uses a mix of Italian Beans but I bet you could use all Borlotti Beans and it would taste almost the same.
- Borlotti Bean and Courgette Hummus – wow! a recipe that uses up two end-of-the-summer gluts? Can it really be true?
So there you have it, my favourite Fresh Borlotti Bean recipes. I think I’ll be making the Bean and Courgette Hummus.