Make Ahead

Terence Hill's Beans

December 29, 2009
2 Ratings
Author Notes

I love beans. And I love Terence Hill's blue-eyed cowboy movies. In My Name is Nobody, he eats a mess of beans, very sloppily, and with huge enjoyment. Later, Henry Fonda daintily picks at some. This is how I interpreted that mess. The mission? Depth of flavour. (Adding the vinegar and wine too early will slow down the beans' cooking time) - Marie Viljoen —Marie Viljoen

Test Kitchen Notes

This recipe has everything we want with beans: pork fat from pancetta, and smoke and heat from dried poblanos (ancho chiles). Marie Viljoen uses a cool technique of adding vinegar and then a bunch of wine toward the end of cooking, which sharpens the dish with acid and keeps the wine flavor fresh, levitating atop the hearty beans and pork. - A&M —The Editors

  • Serves 4
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 bunch scallions, white and green parts, sliced
  • 5 garlic cloves, crushed lightly
  • 6 pancetta rashers, sliced into ribbons
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 cups red kidney beans
  • 3 cups chicken stock or water to cover
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 2 Poblano peppers, soaked, seeded and chopped roughly
  • 3 sprigs thyme
  • 1 bunch flatleaf parsley
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 2 cups dry but fruity red wine
  • salt and peppa
In This Recipe
  1. Soak the beans in water overnight or bring to a boil and allow to rest in water until it is cold, discarding water in either event.
  2. In the olive oil, gently saute the scallions, the garlic, and add the pancetta, cooking over medium heat until the fat runs a little.
  3. Add the tomato paste and stir until it has lightly caramelized.
  4. Add the drained beans, with enough chicken stock or water to cover them.
  5. Add the sugar, the peppers and the herbs, stir, and cover.
  6. Cook gently until the beans are fork-piercable tender, adding additional stock or water from time to time.
  7. When barely tender add vinegar and red wine.
  8. Cook, with lid removed, until the wine has been absorbed.Taste!
  9. Add freshly ground black pepper and salt to taste.
  10. Serve with crusty baguette and sweet butter. Not that Terence ever had either. Or the wine for that matter.
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