If I had to choose grains or beans, I would be in the bean camp. They are so creamy and delicious! Oftentimes when I see a yummy pasta dish I will replace the pasta with beans. That’s what I did with this recipe and you can totally do it, too.
I do realize that beans and grains together are also pretty dreamy; I could not stop eating this dish straight out of the pan. But if I had to choose on or the other…beans would win. This says a lot since I grew up eating pasta by the pound!
I was inspired to make this Asparagus and White Bean saute while perusing my neighborhood Whole Foods. They have a bulk dried bean bar and I can’t seem to walk by it without bringing home a new variety. I usually take a picture of the label so I remember what I bought when I get home. I haven’t made the “Tongues of Fire” beans yet but they are next in the rotation. The beans I used in my Asparagus and White Bean recipe are called white runner beans. They are an off-white colored bean with a delicious creamy flavor. I was inspired by the fact that they turned bright white when soaked. They are very similar to a lima bean but but are a little bigger and creamier.
This dish was so simple to whip up! I just sauteed the veggies with the beans and then tossed them with the cilantro pesto. I hope you will experiment with dried beans this summer!
Asparagus and White Beans with Cilantro Pesto
- 1 pound white runner beans
- 1 pound asparagus chopped
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes sliced
- 1 Tbsp coconut oil
For the Pesto:
- 1 cup loosely packed cilantro leaves chopped
- 1 clove garlic
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 Tbsp fresh lime juice
- dash sea salt and pepper
- To prepare the beans, cover and soak for 3 to 8 hours (or overnight) at room temperature. When ready to cook, drain and rinse beans well and place in a large pot, covering beans by about 2 inches of water. Season with salt and simmer 40 minutes or until tender. Drain.
- To prepare the pesto, place ingredients in blender or food processor and blend until well combined.
- To prepare vegetables, melt coconut oil in saute pan. Add chopped asparagus and saute until softened. Then add cherry tomatoes and cook for a few minutes more. Stir in 2 or so cups of beans with the pesto and stir well. Cook everything together for a few minutes and serve!