Beans Bourguignon

Beef Bourguignon is a classic dish that originated in the Burgundy district of France, a stew prepared with beef braised in red wine, traditionally red Burgundy, and beef broth, generally flavored with garlic, onions and a bouquet garni, with pearl onions and mushrooms added toward the end of cooking.

Here’s a vegetarian version of the dish from the Culinary Institute of America chef Katherine Polenz, who suggests using beans instead of meat. It’s particularily appropriate this time of the year, when people are looking for ways to eat healthy after a bit of indulgence over the holdays.

In Polenz’s Beans Bourguignon, the beans are cooked slowly in red wine, much like the rich Beef Bourguignon originally from France.

The recipe is from her new book, “Vegetarian Cooking at Home with The Culinary Institute of America” (Wiley, 2012), available for purchase at bookstores nationwide or at www.ciaprochef.com/fbi/books.html.

Beans Bourguignon
2 tablespoons butter or margarine
2 ounces smoked tempeh (optional)
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 shallots, diced
4 carrots, peeled, sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
12 ounces cremini mushrooms, quartered
1 sprig thyme
1 sprig rosemary
1 bay leaf
1 cup crushed tomatoes
½ cup vegetable broth
1 cup dry red wine
3 cups kidney beans, cooked
Salt and pepper, to taste
In a small bowl, combine the butter and flour with a fork, mixing until the two are incorporated. Set aside.
In a large saute pan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the tempeh, if using, and sauté for about five minutes. Add the shallots, carrots, and garlic, and cook until the shallots are translucent, about 3 to 4 minutes.
Add the mushrooms and continue to cook until they start to become tender, about 4 to 5 minutes more.
Stir in the thyme, rosemary, bay leaf, tomatoes, broth, and half of the wine. Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce heat to low, and simmer until the vegetables are tender, about 20 to 25 minutes.
Add the rest of the wine, beans, salt, and pepper. Continue to simmer until good flavor develops, about 10 to 15 minutes more. Remove and discard the herbs and bay leaf.
Add the butter and flour mixture to the pan and allow the liquid to thicken. Remove from heat and serve.
Yield: Serves 4.
Approximate nutritional analysis per 8-ounce serving: 190 calories, 8 grams protein, 25 grams carbohydrates, 6 grams fiber, 4.5 grams fat (2 grams saturated), 190 milligrams sodium.

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