Rice and beans

dinner81.jpgRice and double beans, really. I bought the green beans at the jalapeño-less wild-rice-saturated market the other day. They looked good. Then I got them home and started trimming them. No snap. They were old. Not in-the-store-too-long old; they were on-the-vine-too-long old, with that slightly woody texture thing starting to happen. The upside to that is the beans inside were bigger and taking on a toothy starchiness that I rather like, in its way. So I cooked them a little extra and marinated them overnight. They were edible. Even tasty. But again, in their way. Qualified, circumstantial deliciousness.

I made a simple rice pilaf–sautéed a chopped onion in olive oil with salt until it started to brown, added a few cloves of chopped garlic, added a cup of long grain white rice, sautéed that until the rice looked opaque, added 2 cups of water (broth would have been better, but I had none), brought it to a boil, covered it, reduced heat to a simmer, and let it sit for 15 minutes, turned off the heat, left it covered and sitting there for 5 minutes, uncovered it, fluffed it, and voila! Oh wait, I almost forgot: I also added a handful of orzo to the rice right before adding the water. It makes it a bit like homemade Rice-a-Roni.

You like the look of that dal? Here’s how to make it: devote a decade or so of your life to studying French history, drop that and become a “food writer,” take about 5 years figuring out how that works during which time you spend six months writing for what may have been the worst magazine ever published and another six months at an overpriced cooking school where you learn very little and get even less professional help, be lucky enough to have a friend who gets a job at a large and well-respected regional lifestyle magazine who leaves said job and recommends you as a replacement, have another friend corporate-savvy enough to tell you how to ace interviews, ace the interviews, work there for almost three years, bust out as a freelancer, end up on Amy’s Kitchen PR list, receive an unsolicited box of their new canned soup varieties, bring said soups to the family cabin because you’re never going to try them at home, open the can of “Indian Curry Lentil Dal,” heat it up, and serve with rice pilaf and marinated green beans.