F&W Pick: Fagioli grassi – stewed fat beans
Author: Antonio Carluccio
Photography by Laura Edwards
We’re wholeheartedly embracing a move towards adding a wider range of vegetarian based dishes to our repertoire. Now Antonio Carluccio is tempting people to explore their relationship with vegetables, celebrating pods, seeds, shoots, pulses and grains seasoned with his authentic Italian style. While the book proposes a series of versatile vegetarian meals, Antonio also showcases the best way to compliment meat and fish with raw, cooked or preserved vegetables at every table sitting.
Fagioli grassi – stewed fat beans
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 large onions, peeled and coarsely chopped
- 300g dried borlotti beans, soaked in cold water for 24 hours
- 4–6 pieces of pork belly skin, each about 12–16cm fat removed
- 3 sprigs of fresh rosemary
- Freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 small bunch of fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
- 6 pork cooking sausages
- 2 tablespoons tomato purée
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil to medium, and fry the onions until softened, about 10 minutes. Drain the beans and add them to the onions with 2 litres of fresh cold water. Bring to the boil and boil for about 10 minutes.
- Lay the pieces of pork belly skin on a clean work surface, and sprinkle each with the needles from 2 of the rosemary sprigs, the black pepper, nutmeg and parsley. Roll up like a sausage, away from you, and secure three or four times with pieces of butcher’s string. Add these little rolls to the beans, and cook at a simmer for 2 hours.
- Now add the sausages, tomato purée and the final sprig of rosemary, and cook for another hour. Test to see if the pork skin and beans are soft; if not, cook for a little longer.
- Add a little water if too dry, and some salt and pepper if required. Cut the pork belly skin rolls into slices, the sausages too if you like, and eat everything warm.