I have a magic formula for preparing really fast, pretty cheap meals. Take a stroll through the produce section and survey the hearty greens section. You’re looking for stuff like cabbage, chard, and kale. Pick one.
Now take a stroll over to the bean section. You could go for dried beans if you want to really save money or canned beans if you want to save time. White beans, navy beans, pinto beans, or even chickpeas. Pick one.
Add a few other simple ingredients to your cart and you have the makings of a really delicious stew that can be made in no time. Once you get the hang of mixing hearty greens with a few other hearty ingredients, the possibilities are pretty endless.
1) Chop and rinse cabbage under cold water.
2) In a large pot, add olive oil over medium heat. Once hot, add onions and garlic and cook for a few minutes until veggies start to soften. Season with salt and pepper.
3) Add in diced tomatoes and stock and bring to a simmer.
4) Add in chopped cabbage and bay leaves. Simmer for 10-12 minutes, covered, until cabbage is tender.
5) Remove bay leaves and add in rinsed beans. Season stew with a pinch of red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper.
Serve the stew immediately with really crusty bread.
There isn’t a particular reason why I chose savoy cabbage for this recipe. Frankly, it was on sale and looked green and fresh. I didn’t do anything fancy with it. I just peeled off a the leaves and rinsed them really well. Dirt has a tendency to get very trapped in their leaves.
Then I just roughly chopped up the leaves. Doesn’t get much easier than that.
Making the Stew
I say this stew takes thirty minutes, but that’s probably an over-estimate if anything. Apart from chopping up your cabbage, just dice up an onion and a few cloves of garlic and the work is pretty much done.
Then add some oil to a large pan over medium heat and start cooking your onions and garlic. Season them with a little salt and pepper and cook them until they are soft, maybe five minutes.
Then add in your diced tomatoes and stock and bring the whole thing to a simmer. Once the mixture is simmering, add in the cabbage and a few bay leaves.
Cover this and let it simmer on low heat for 10-15 minutes until the cabbage is nice and tender.
Finally, stir in your white beans (drain and rinse them) and season it well with salt, pepper, and a pinch of red pepper flakes.
Remember to remove those bay leaves before serving.
Serve this stew up with some nice crusty bread and it’s pretty tough to beat.
Anybody else a fan of my hearty green + bean stew plan?
I would guess this stew is under $2/serving and is really filling and delicious.