From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...It is hard to come up with a recipe for Frugal Foodie Friday when we're in the middle of serving special, and I might add, generally expensive, holiday meals to our families. With some help from Cooking Light magazine, I think I've found a dish that's so delicious you'll be pleased to share it with your family and friends, despite its relatively low cost. While this bean stew is substantial enough to serve as a meal, it also makes a wonderful filler for a holiday buffet or pot-luck supper. It's simple to prepare, but it takes about four hours to bake, so you'll want to plan your time accordingly. If you decide to make the stew, use fresh thyme and sage if possible and don't stint on the onions. This is a dish that pops with flavor and I think you will enjoy it. The Silver Fox is not generally a bean man, but even he gave the stew a thumbs up. I do hope you'll give the recipe a try. Here is how the stew is made.
Pork and Herbed White Bean Stew...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite courtesy of Cooking Light
1 cup dried white beans
6 cups boiling water
1-1/2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 (1-pound) boneless pork picnic roast, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 cups chicken broth
1/2 cup water
2 fresh thyme sprigs
1 fresh sage sprig
2 cups coarsely chopped onion
1/2 cup coarsely chopped carrot
6 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
1) Place beans in a Dutch oven. Cover with 6 cups boiling water and let them stand, covered, for1 hour. Drain.
2) Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
3) Heat a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add 1 tablespoon olive oil to pan, and swirl to coat. Sprinkle pork evenly with 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper. Add pork to pan and sauté for 6 minutes, turning to brown on all sides. Stir in beans, remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, broth, water, thyme, and sage and bring to a boil. Cover and bake for 1 hour.
4) Heat a skillet over medium-high heat. Add remaining 1-1/2 teaspoons oil to pan, swirling to coat bottom. Add onion and carrot and sauté 4 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add garlic, and sauté 1 minute, stirring constantly. Stir onion mixture into bean mixture and continue baking for another 1-1/2 hours, or until beans are tender. Drain solids through a sieve over a bowl, reserving solids and cooking liquid. Skim and discard fat from top of liquid. Stir cooking liquid back into pork mixture. Yield: 4 servings.
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