One for the Food Storage

We’ve been counseled by church leaders for as long as I can remember to prepare in all ways and to be provident in our living. Food storage is just one area. It’s taken us this long but we’ve finally established a supply that I feel really good about. This summer we were challenged by our Stake Presidency to live as if “Someday” were “Today.” Try to eat only from your food storage supply… don’t buy any gas for the week… use a limited amount of electricity… spend only the cash you have on hand, if any at all. For the first time ever, I felt prepared. After this exercise and the experience with the Gap Fire during July, I can definitely say that I have developed a testimony of following the commandment to “prepare every needful thing” (D&C 109:8).

Despite the popular belief that meals made mostly or entirely from food storage items can be less than appealing, I have found a recipe that begs to differ. I stumbled upon this little winner purely by accident. And I certainly wasn’t searching for food storage recipes, per se. But there it was– on Epicurious, no less!– calling out for me to try it.

If you have dried or canned white beans hanging around in your pantry and need something to do with them, I highly suggest you try the following:

fagioli all'uccelletto

fagioli all’uccelletto

Gourmet | November 1995
John Pozza: Fort Smith, Arkansas

The people of Tuscany are known in Italy as mangiafagioli, or bean eaters, and when I was in Florence as an art history student and then in Lucca as a teacher I learned the reason why. All the trattorie served fagioli all’uccelletto for only a few lire. I was fortunate to find an Italian friend in Arkansas who had a recipe.

Serves 6.

1 pound dried white beans (Great Northern or navy), picked over
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup olive oil
a 1-pound can whole peeled tomatoes including juice
2 tablespoons chopped fresh sage or 2 teaspoons dried, crumbled

In a large saucepan soak beans in enough cold water to cover by 2 inches at least 8 hours or overnight.

Drain beans in a colander and return to saucepan with cold water to cover by 2 inches. Simmer beans, covered, until tender, about 45 minutes to 1 hour. Reserve 1 cup cooking liquid and drain beans in colander.

In a heavy kettle cook garlic in oil over moderate heat, stirring until softened. Add reserved cooking liquid, beans, tomatoes with juice, sage, and salt and pepper to taste and simmer mixture, stirring occasionally, until thickened, about 25 minutes.

Simple, simple, simple. And so incredibly good. Just make sure you have some fresh bread to accompany this dish!

Mangi bene!

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