Shelling Beans | At Down Under | Viviane Perenyi

There are activities strongly associated with a specific time of year. Seasonal.
Shelling beans is one of them.

The transition between summer and autumn is truly a prolific time. A glorious blend made of fresh apples, sweet pears, aromatic grapes and end-of-season peaches and plums.
On the vegetable side, there’s plenty too. Specially beans. Green beans –les haricots verts– snake beans and shelling beans…

Bean Risoni and Tomato Salad | At Down Under | Viviane Perenyi

Paprika and I were all happy to find the shelling beans this year. And we bought a lot of them.
Afterward came the time to gather around the bulky bag, release one after another the beans from their pods, weigh and pack them.

Beans are a staple in Réunion. So I prepared some the way I was used to eat them when I was young, stewed with onion, garlic and bay leave to serve on rice.
And because the sunny and warm days kept going, I also wanted to try something different and fresh. This salad makes a good use of sweet tomatoes, parsley for a fresh note and nutty white beans. A good accompaniment to a grilled meat.

White Shelling Beans | At Down Under | Viviane Perenyi

Risoni Tomato and Bean Salad
(for 2)

300 g fresh white beans, shelled
100 g risoni
6-8 small tomato, like cherry tomato, halved
Half red onion, finely sliced
1 plump garlic clove, crushed
A small bunch of flat parsley, finely chopped
1 bay leaf
1 small shallot
Salt and pepper
Olive oil

In a sauce pan over medium-high fire, place the beans, bay leaf, shallot and salt in plenty of water. Cover and let it boil. Then reduce the heat and let it simmer for 20-25 minutes or until the beans are tender, but not too soft. In the meantime cook the risoni following the package instructions. Drain and rinse under cold water. Add a splash of olive oil and stir to coat and prevent sticking. Keep it aside. When the beans are cooked drain them and remove the bay leaf. In a skillet over medium fire, heat the equivalent of 1 to 2 tablespoon of oil and cook the onion until translucent and soft. Add garlic and stir until fragrant. Add the beans and risoni and stir gently. Add fresh parsley and stir to coat. Add tomatoes and season to your liking. It can be served warm or cold. Just add a splash of olive oil if served cold.

Bean Risoni and Tomato Salad | At Down Under | Viviane Perenyi