Fratelli Perata Winery

Fratelli Perata’s Tuscan Bean Stew

Simple foods can be so good, and here's another example. With only 5 ingredients (not counting the olive oil) and a little time, this is a very comforting, filling meal. And of course it has cutting edge ingredients like kale, which is good for you. Pair it with the Bambino Grande or actually most any red Fratelli Perata wine.

2 cups dried small white beans
1 pound sweet Italian sausage, bulk
Scant amount of olive oil
1 yellow onion, finely chopped
1 bunch kale
2 pints chicken broth

Clean and soak the dried beans overnight, drain, cover with water, bring to a boil, then simmer 2 hours until beans are cooked. Or you may start with canned beans which are OK. You know, trade-offs, not as good but faster.

Break down the sausage so there are no clumps or lumps. Easy but messy when raw, a little harder to do while cooking. Just follow safe food handling procedures when touching the raw stuff. In a large, high sided skillet, sauté the sausage in a minimum amount of olive oil, stirring frequently until cooked through. Remove sausage, add onion and sauté about 10 minutes over low heat until soft, but not caramelized.

Add the kale, which has the stems removed and chopped somewhat. Saute with the onions about 5 minutes, then add the chicken broth. Heat through until kale is softened, then add the beans and the sausage back to the pot. Making sure there is enough liquid to cover it all completely, simmer until the beans are quite soft, about 1 to 2 hours. Remove 2 cups of (mostly) beans and about 1/2 cup of liquid and puree. Add back to the pot.  Serve hot, salt and pepper if you must, crusty bread great.