Free Recipe from The Inspired Vegan: Savory Grits with Sautéed Broad Beans, Roasted Fennel and Thyme

Are you guys excited for our new cookbook, The Inspired Vegan? To get us started, the nice folks at Da Capo sent over a recipe (below) from the book: Savory Grits with Sautéed Broad Beans, Roasted Fennel and Thyme.

You can see another recipe from the book, Molasses, Miso, and Maple Candied Sweet Potatoes on my other blog, Have Fun, Do Good. Enjoy!

Savory Grits with Sautéed Broad Beans, Roasted Fennel and Thyme

Savory Grits with Sautéed Broad Beans, Roasted Fennel and Thyme
Yield: 4 to 6 servings
Soundtrack: “Walkin Blues’” by Robert Johnson from Robert Johnson—The Complete Recordings
Book: Hammer and Hoe: Alabama Communists During the Great Depression by Robin D. G. Kelley

Warm, creamy, and scrumptious, this dish will become a standard comfort food in your family’s home. The broad beans (also known as fava beans) give it an earthy richness, and the soft, melting texture of the roasted fennel adds subtle complexity. If they are available, use spring-fresh broad beans. Otherwise frozen fava beans, which you’ll find at most Middle Eastern markets, will work fine for this recipe. If broad beans are not available, fresh or frozen lima beans are a good substitution. And please make sure you use grits (I prefer yellow), not polenta, their close cousin. By the way, the roasted fennel is great as a stand-alone side dish.

2 medium-size fennel bulbs (about 3/4 pound each)
Freshly ground black pepper
2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 teaspoon coarse sea salt

Broad Beans
A little over 2 pounds of fresh broad beans, or 2 cups frozen broad beans, thawed
2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 large garlic clove, minced
1/2 cup Vegetable Stock (page 4)
1/2 teaspoon coarse sea salt
1 tablespoon fresh thyme

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, and more for drizzling if you like
1/4 cup finely chopped onions
1 teaspoon ground cumin
Coarse sea salt
4 cups Vegetable Stock (page 4)
3/4 cup yellow grits
1/2 cup Creamed Cashews (page 14)
Freshly ground white pepper

For the fennel
Preheat the oven to 375°F.

Cut the stalks and fronds off the fennel, so you are left with just the round white bulbs at the base. Cut each bulb, lengthwise, into eight pieces and remove the core.

In a large bowl, combine the olive oil with the salt. Add the fennel and toss well to coat.

Arrange the fennel on a parchment-lined baking sheet and roast until the fennel begins to caramelize, about 40 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes for even roasting.

Sprinkle with pepper and set aside.

For the beans

If using fresh broad beans, shell, blanch, and peel them, then set them aside (see sidebar). If using frozen beans, rinse them until they are thawed and set them aside to drain.

Combine the olive oil and garlic in a large skillet over medium heat and sauté until fragrant and golden, about 2 minutes. Add the stock, the salt, and the reserved beans. Lower the heat to medium-low, partially cover the skillet, and simmer until the beans are tender, 12 to 14 minutes. Add the thyme, stir the mixture well, and cook for an additional minute.

For the grits

In a medium-size sauté pan over medium heat, warm 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and add the onion, cumin, and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Cook for about 7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until softened. Set aside.

In a medium-size saucepan, combine 3 cups of the stock and ½ teaspoon of salt and bring to a boil. Whisk the grits into the liquid until no lumps remain. Return to a boil, then quickly lower the heat to low. Simmer, whisking occasionally to prevent the grits from sticking to the bottom of the pan, until the grits have absorbed most of the liquid and are beginning to thicken, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the remaining cup of stock and simmer for another 10 minutes, whisking occasionally, until most of the liquid has been absorbed. Stir in the 1/2 cup of Creamed Cashews and the onion mixture, cover, and simmer, whisking frequently, until the grits are soft and fluffy, about 30 minutes.

If desired, add a few tablespoons of water to thin out the grits.

Season with salt and white pepper to taste.

Top each serving of grits with several slices of roasted fennel and about 1/2 cup of the beans. If desired, drizzle each serving with a little olive oil.

Shelling, Blanching, and Peeling Fresh Broad Beans
First, bend the tip of the tough outer shell, pull down the seam, and remove the bean inside. In a saucepan over high heat, bring water to a boil. Add the broad beans and cook for about 45 seconds. Drain and immediately rinse in cold running water. Transfer the beans to a bowl filled with cold water. Pinch each bean to remove its skin. Discard the skin.

Credits: From the book The Inspired Vegan by Bryant Terry. Excerpted by arrangement with Da Capo Lifelong, a member of the Perseus Books Group. Copyright © 2012. Recipe photo is by Jennifer Martine.

Full disclosure: I received a review copy of The Inspired Vegan. Also, the link from The Inspired Vegan is connected to my Amazon Associates account. If you buy something after clicking on the link, I get a small portion of the sale.

9 responses to “Free Recipe from The Inspired Vegan: Savory Grits with Sautéed Broad Beans, Roasted Fennel and Thyme

  1. This looks delicious and comforting. I am not sure what a broad bean is. Maybe I just don’t know this bean with that name. But this makes me think of the grits I love from Cafe Gratitude in Seattle. I cooked the Tortillas stuffed c/swiss chard, currants, and spicy guacamole and have posted a quickie on Google +

    • Hi Patricia,

      I’m not on Google + so I won’t be able to see your post 😦 What did you think of the Tortillas Stuffed with Swiss Chard, Currants and Spicy Guacamole? Broad beans are another name for fava beans, which I believe are in season in the spring.

      • Just prepared Bryant Terry’s swiss chard, guacamole tortilla. The guacamole is a different recipe than I usually prepare. This one calls for chopped red onions, which I don’t usually include in my recipe; cilantro, lime juice, garlic and chopped onions. I learned to put the pit of the avocado back in the mash up completed so that there is minimal browning of the guacamole. The swiss chard is then blanched, cooed on ice then sauteed with dried organic cranberries, garlic and a little orange juice for a one minute. The organic cranberries were my twist.

        Finally I warmed wheat tortillas in a skillet with a tiny bit of olive oil with a couple of tablespoons of the swiss chard on one side and guacamole of top of this. Then I flipped the tortilla so that was browned on both sides.

        It was quick and extremely satisfying, surprisingly so tasty.. I couldn’t imagine the final taste although I make each thing individually.

        This recipe is a keeper and inexpensive. I had left overs for breakfast with a cup of coffee.

        I have made a few other things including the vegetable broth. It’s in my refrigerator waiting for next recipe. And I will post and link photos for next time. I have already made the mustard greens and black eye pea dish. And it was SLAMMING!!!!

    • Thanks for sharing your Google + post here, Patricia. I really appreciate it. The mustard greens and black eye pea dish is one I’ve been thinking about making, so I’m glad to know it was slamming! (:

  2. I was feeling intimidated by this book…everything in it looks like it talks a long time, a lot of ingredients, and a lot of pots and pans to clean up.

    So I just did it my lazy way, and it worked out just fine. I started with Saag Tofu, and it was AWESOME:

    • Elisa ~ Your photo is *amazing*. That looks soooooo good.

      I recommend the Coconut Quinoa. It was quick and delish, and if you have the time, the Red Beans with Thick Gravy and Roasted Garlic was AMAZING.

      I agree that many of the recipes take more time than I have to cook, but I’m thinking that I will either cook from it on the weekend, or just cook one dish from it during the week, and then make quicker recipes to go with it.

      Also, these recipes look quick, easy and yummy (yes, two are drinks!)

      – Garlic-Ginger-Sauteed Beet Greens (p. 30)
      – Simple Salad of Butter Lettuce and Fresh Spring Herbs with Meyer Lemon Vinaigrette (p. 54)
      – Yellow Basmati Rice (p.71)
      – Cherry Sangria (p.77)
      – Red Beet Tapenade Crostini (p. 78)
      – Sliced Mint and Cucumber Salad (p.91)
      – Purple Slaw with Toasted Pecans (p. 135)
      – Slurricane Shooter (p. 173)

  3. Pingback: 21 Tasty and Cost-Effective Breakfast for Dinner Ideas | personal fincance

  4. Pingback: 2013 Retrospect: Fondest Recipes | Get Sconed!

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