White beans and endive … traditional recipe at ‘Agata and Romeo’
Healthy ingredients infused with traditional recipes and flavours to bring the ‘taste’ of magic…
In June Tricia and Claudine visited Tricia’s cousins amazing restaurant ‘Agata e Romeo’ located in a beautiful area in Rome near Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore.
They loved the exquisitely decorated dining area that lies behind the simple and unassuming entrance… The paintings, the woodwork, the teapot collection, the simple elegance…
They were treated to a visual and culinary delight that night!
Claudine really loved the fresh tuna and she described in great detail the beautiful plate designs of all the courses they enjoyed.
They were lucky enough to be given a beautiful (and very heavy!) recipe book which they carried back on the plane from Rome. (Apparently their luggage nearly weighed over the limit because of it!)
This morning as I soaked up some early sun, I enjoyed looking over the many traditional and creative recipes from the book.
When I spotted this next recipe I was so excited because like Agata, I have fond memories of a similar dish with beans and endive my mother often made.
My mother would tell me the benefits of legumes and still to this day I enjoy adding them to many of my recipes. They are known to be an excellent source of protein.
I know you can buy them in cans and precooked – although like most foods, if you do get the chance to cook them fresh – it usually means less additives.
I love this simple home-made approach to cooking the beans and the escarole (endive) – well it’s something I love for its bitter yet tasty flavour.
Agata’s family has been in the restaurant business since 1890. Agata today, together with her husband Romeo (whose specialty is in service and wines; has been part of the Italian Sommeliers Association since 1984) and her 2 daughters, combine real elegance with creative and some traditional dishes (that has been passed down through many generations) to bring a wonderful Italian restaurant experience. To read more: www.agataeromeo.it
Escarole soup and beans with toast
1.5 kg of fresh shelled cannellini beans
1.5 kg of escarole (endive)
2 cloves of garlic dress
2 dl (nearly 1 cup) of intense fruity olive oil
A bit of chilli
For the garnish
200g diced homemade bread
A spoon of extra virgin olive oil – intense fruity
Pour the beans into a pan with a clove of garlic and the celery. Cover flush with boiling water and let them cook.
Meanwhile, place the washed and thickly julienned endive in hot salted water to blanch for a few minutes.
Drain the endive and retain a ladle of the cooking water.
Now to prepare the soup, fry the oil, pepper and garlic in the bottom of a large pan, then, in successive layers, layer the escarole and beans from a first layer of escarole.
Cook on low heat with a lid, for 30 minutes, by which time the soup will appear dried up.
In the meantime, cover the bread cubes with oil and add to the oven to toast.
Just before serving, season the soup with the remaining oil, salt and pepper, then arrange on a plate with the diced toasted bread surrounding.
Special note from Agata…
“This dish that reminds me of my childhood… is a soup that my grandmother often offered me in the cold days of winter.”
Just a note from Claudine
Look it up … You’ll find endive is very good for you … and has many benefits … As many veggies… endive contains vitamins and minerals that are essential for good functioning bodies. Here is a link if you like to know more around the benefits of endive. http://www.healthbenefitstimes.com/health-benefits-of-endives/
Bye for now…
And do you agree with me that “time flies when you are having a great experience?”
That delightful Italian experience, welcomed by Tricia’s cousins… a night that will stay with me… being indulged with the many exquisite Agata’s crafted dishes and the Romeo’s selected wines… The conversations, the stories they brought to the table in their delightful warm welcome restaurant “Agata and Romeo”.
Sensational it was … Thank you Agata and Romeo and we look forward to cooking (with Tricia) some more dishes from your book and meeting again…