How to spice up Bean Rice Casserole without using tomatoes ?
- breadandcoffee Nov 17, 2009 05:53 AM
Made a Bean Rice casserole with Fava, Chick beans, celery and sauteed onions. I used a little couscous spice, salt and pepper for flavoring. Then put the whole in the oven with mozzarella sprinkled on the top. It was good but very bland.
Most of the recipes on the net suggest adding tomatoes or tomatoe sauce but members of my family are alergic to them.
Any suggestions or recipes ?
Hm... my ideas:
Caramelize the onions well before putting them in the casserole and crush 3 or 4 cloves of garlic and add them to the caramelized onions.
Spice it up with a finely minced serrano pepper, or roast a poblano and include that.
Add chopped roasted red pepper and stir in a spoonful of tahini.
Top it with a combination of chopped lemon peel, garlic, salt, and fresh parsley.
Any or even all of these would be delicious in my opinion.
What is "couscous spice"?
Putting in a sauce like a bachamel or some sort of gravey and using a different cheese for a topper maybe manchego would probably help you out. I would probably add some meat to it, like crab, pulled chicken or pork. Chorizo, andouille, pancetta or bacon would also pick it up a notch.
These are very good suggestions.
The only idea I have to add that might be new is to slice some caramelized fennel bulb up into the mix, too, and/or lightly toasted fennel seeds... and/or lots of butter and parm. :)
Did you make your beans in broth, by the way? If you start the dried legumes off by cooking them in broth -- a vegetarian one if you don't eat meat -- this helps establish a stronger base flavor.
Stir the juice of a lemon into the rice & bean mix, then top with a garlic-yogurt-lemon-mint sauce with harissa on the side.
Capers or cured lemon would add salt and acid to this dish. Roasted red peppers would be another idea.
Brown onions past the sauteed point, then add chopped garlic and ginger and allow this to turn golden. You can also add chopped chile or a pinch of red chile powder. Squeeze in lemon juice before you add the topping. Make sure that your legumes are well salted. I agree with the above that a bechamel topping would go nicely with this.