It’s a new year folks and I for one am ready to wipe the slate clean and start anew. Sayonara 2014, I’ve seen enough of your sorry ass and I’m more than ready to move on. In honour of this fresh beginning we have laid out before us (please be kind 2015!) I’ve decided to strip things right back to basics. Nothing fancy. No unpronounceable ingredients or long-winded instructions. Simply a straightforward stew. Comforting. Familiar. Seasonal. And super easy to make. I (and I hope you) approve.
I talked of resolutions in my last post and I’m pleased to inform you that one in particular has been something of revelation. The whole ‘no internet before bed’ thing is having a staggering effect on my sleep. Not forcing stimulation on my already tired, social-media sensitized brain is like a magic cure for overactive minds that tend to worry into the wee hours of the night. It’s quite literally like turning off the light in my head. If you haven’t made such a resolution yourself, I seriously urge you to give it a go – especially if you’re in need of a good nights kip like myself.
Back to the stew then. Straight-up comfort food is what I’m after during these dark months – not least in January when my morale is at an all time low. Just when I think I have a handle on things, boom, something else sidles out of the woodwork just to add an extra level of stress to my day. Hence the ultra pared down images with minimal accessories, which kinda reflect my current need to focus on the job at hand without any major distractions. Chance would be a fine thing.
I realise this probably all sounds like I’m talking in code but suffice to say the second book is underway meaning the next few months are going to be cra-zy. Not least because the current book is yet to be released in the US (it’s launching in Feb, by the way) so it’s all systems go. I’ll be blogging as much as I can during this hectic period – I actually find a lot of solace here and it’s also a great way for me to flesh out ideas. For now though, a soothing bowl of spring green stew it is.
what you’ll need
1 tbsp olive oil
2 brown onions
2 large carrots
3 celery sticks
1 sprig rosemary
several sprigs of thyme
a few sage leaves
4 cloves garlic
5 salad potatoes
1 vegetable stock cube
380g drained cannellini beans
two large handful spring greens
salt and pepper
30g flat leaf parsley
what you’ll do
heat the olive oil in a heavy-based saucepan. roughly chop the onion, carrot and celery and add to pan. season, cover and sweat for several minutes until they begin to soften.
finely chop the rosemary, thyme and sage. add to pan and stir to coat. sweat for several more minutes. finely slice the garlic and add to pan. cover and let the garlic infuse for a few minutes.
roughly chop the salad potatoes and add to pan. stir to combine before covering with water and adding the stock cube. bring to gently simmer and cook for around 10-15minutes or until the potatoes are cooked through.
add the spring greens followed by the drained and rinsed cannellini beans, season and cover. let the greens wilt into the stew before stirring to combine, then simmer gently for around 10minutes. check seasoning and serve with a generous scattering of freshly chopped flat leaf parsley. a hunk of crusty bread would be perfect to mop up any juices too.