Swedish-style ‘meatballs’ and creamy pasta: Faculty Night time Vegan’s midweek recipes for tinned beans | Meals

W.When I say that I’m a canned bean fan, I mean, I’m a canned bean fan. A friend once joked that I could write a cookbook called Doing New Things With a Tin of Beans, which I almost mistook for a challenge. Nutritionally they’re a powerhouse, but it’s their versatility that really gives me life. I recently found out that you can mix a whole can of cannellini beans into a silky smooth double cream substitute, ideal for shiny pasta sauces like this vegan penne alla vodka. Borlotti, on the other hand, are beautiful and meaty when pureed with diced mushrooms and used like ground beef.

Borlotti beans Swedish “meatballs” (picture above)

Don’t be tempted to mash the beans – you want them to be chunky in consistency – so I would advise against using a food processor if you can avoid it. A fork or potato masher should do the job.

preparation 15 minutes
Cook 45 minutes
Serves 4th

For the “meatballs”
1 x 400g can Borlotti beans, drained and rinsed
60g panko breadcrumbs
50ml boiling water
2 tbsp vegan bouillon
, or storage powder
2 Tea spoons
vegan sauce granules (I use red bisto, but strict vegans may prefer an alternative)
1 teaspoon Marmite
25g vegan butter or margarine
1 medium onion
, peeled and finely chopped
85g shiitake mushrooms, finely chopped
½ teaspoon fine sea salt
½ teaspoon ground black pepper
⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg
¼ tsp allspice
1 tbsp vegetable oil
Finely chopped
Parsely, serve
Lingonberry or lingonberry sauce, serve

For the sauce
40g vegan butter
3 tbsp white flour
380ml vegetable stock
150ml unsweetened and unflavoured soy milk

In a medium bowl, mash the beans with a fork until each is just broken and the mixture is lumpy; do not crush into a paste. Add the breadcrumbs and mix.

Put the boiling water, broth, bisto and marmite in a measuring cup and stir until smooth.

Set a medium skillet over medium heat and add the butter. Once the onion is melted, add the onion and sauté, stirring, for two minutes. When the chopped onion becomes translucent, add the mushrooms, stir-fry for another 8-10 minutes, then add salt, pepper and spices, stir, and remove from heat.

Add the onions to the bean puree and stir to blend. With slightly moistened hands, shape the mixture into tablespoon-sized balls and place on a plate.

Put the pan back on medium heat and add the vegetable oil. Fry the balls in two servings for about 10 minutes each, turning regularly until they are lightly browned all over, then transfer to a plate while you make the sauce.

Set the skillet on medium-low heat and add the butter. After melting, stir in the flour until a smooth paste is formed. Gradually add the broth and stir until smooth. Simmer gently, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens into a rich sauce. While stirring, add the soy milk in a slow, steady stream and, once the sauce is smooth and creamy, turn the heat down to low and return the meatballs to the pan. Simmer gently for a few minutes, stirring often so that the sauce doesn’t stick, then serve with mashed potatoes or pappardelle, some fresh parsley and a little cranberry or lingonberry sauce.

Penne alla vodka with cannellini cream

Penne alla vodka by Richard Makin with cannellini cream.

You need a high speed mixer to get a really smooth cannellini cream. If you don’t have any, use a hand blender or food processor to make the beans as smooth as possible, then pass through a fine sieve to catch any hard shells.

preparation 10 mins
Cook 20 minutes
Serves 4th

1 x 400g can Cannellini beans, undrained
100ml unsweetened and unflavored soy milk

2 tbsp olive oil
1 small onion
, peeled and very finely chopped
2 cloves of garlic, peeled and chopped
4 tbsp tomato puree
½ teaspoon sugar
350g puree
70ml vodka
½ teaspoon chilli flakes
, plus extra for serving
Salt and black pepper
300g dried penne
1 small
handful Basil leaves, break up

Put the beans and their liquid with the soy milk in a high-speed mixer, puree until smooth and creamy, then set aside.

Place a medium saucepan on medium heat and add the olive oil. Once hot, add the onion and sauté, stirring regularly, for three to five minutes until tender. Add the garlic and sauté for an additional two minutes, being careful not to turn it brown.

Add tomato puree, sugar, passata, vodka and chilli flakes, stir and bring to a simmer. Cover the pan and let the sauce simmer for eight to ten minutes, stirring occasionally so it doesn’t get caught.

In the meantime, bring a large pot of salted water to the boil, add the penne and cook al dente according to the instructions on the packet.

As soon as the sauce is reduced and thickened, stir in the cannellini cream, season to taste and keep warm.

When they are al dente, drain the pasta and collect 150 ml of the cooking water. Add the pasta to the sauce, reduce the heat and mix. Cook, toss, and stir often, for two minutes, adding the reserved pasta water as needed to dissolve the sauce (you may not need all of the water; use just enough to get the sauce to the consistency you want).

Serve with an additional pinch of chilli flakes or freshly ground black pepper and a pinch of fresh basil.

Richard Makin writes the Vegan school evening Blog

Makhani Rajma (North-Indian Fashion Creamy Purple Beans)

Rajma, or red bean based dishes, is a staple food in many Indian households. Of the many Indian preparations that use red kidney beans, Makhani Rajma is a classic. It uses spice layering techniques to build up the flavor, with onions, tomatoes, and a dash of cream added right when they shine best. The recipe can be adapted to dietary needs. If you like chili, you will like Makhani Rajma. This dish is usually served as an accompaniment to a larger meal, but it can also be eaten as a starter. The finished dish tastes even better when it rests in the refrigerator overnight. Serve family-friendly with basmati or brown rice, naan and / or raita.

Active time: 30 minutes; Total time: 1 hour

Storage information: The sauce can be prepared up to the addition of beans and refrigerated for up to 3 days.

Where to buy: Indian bay leaf (Tamal patra) can be found in Indian grocery stores and online.

In a deep, heavy-bottomed pan, heat the oil over medium heat until it shimmers.

If you are using onions, add them to the pan and cook, stirring frequently, for 6 to 8 minutes, until soft and light golden brown. Stir in the ginger and garlic and, while stirring, making sure that nothing burns, cook for about 30 seconds until they are aromatic. Add the cinnamon, cloves, cardamom and bay leaf and cook for about 1 minute, stirring, until fragrant.

If you’re using the onions, sprinkle the cayenne pepper on top and mix to coat it evenly. (If you’re not using the onions, take the pan off the heat and let it cool for about 1 minute before adding the cayenne pepper, as it will burn instantly in very hot oil.)

Add the tomatoes and stir evenly with the spices. Cook, stirring, until the liquid starts to evaporate, about 2 minutes. (See NOTES for a smoother sauce.)

Add the beans and stir gently so they don’t break. Add the water, cover and reduce the heat to low. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally to prevent the beans from sticking to the bottom of the pan, until slightly thickened, about 20 minutes.

When the sauce starts to thicken, add the fenugreek leaves. Stir in sugar and season with salt. Cover again and continue to cook until the sauce thickens and the flavors merge, another 10 minutes.

Try one of the beans and if it’s still not flavorful add 1/4 to 1/2 cup of water, cover again and simmer for another 10 minutes, then try again. Cover and cook for another 10 minutes. Season to taste and add more salt and sugar or honey if necessary.

Remove and discard the cinnamon stick and bay leaf to serve. Pour the cream over it, remove from the stove and serve hot, family-style, as a side dish or main course, optionally with rice, naan and raita as a side dish.


For a smooth sauce, puree the tomatoes and spices before adding the beans. Take the pan off the heat and let it cool for a few minutes. Remove and save the cinnamon and bay leaf, then use a hand blender to process the sauce in short bursts to reduce the splashing until smooth. If you use a regular mixer, let the sauce cool completely before processing. After pureeing, add the sauce to the pan, add the cinnamon stick and bay leaf again, and continue with the rest of the recipe.

If you don’t use onions, use 1 cup of chopped tomatoes as well.

The dish is best if you use homemade beans. See related recipe for Simply Perfect Pot of Beans.

The recipe can be adapted to other types of cooked beans, including black-eyed peas and adzuki beans. Or replace the beans with your preferred ingredient, e.g. B. parboiled baby potatoes and halved cremini mushrooms, or proteins such as.

Indian bay leaf, also known as tamal patra, has a different taste than regular bay leaf and results in a more complex flavor.

Fresh fenugreek leaves and the dried seeds have a different taste from dried fenugreek leaves. Do not replace.

Tested by Ann Maloney.

Email questions to the grocery department below food@washpost.com.