One of our favorite late-summer recipes is Tuscan Cranberry Bean and Shrimp Salad. Fresh cranberry beans or borlotti beans are rather difficult to find unless you frequent the farmer’s market in your neighborhood. When you do find them, buy plenty and freeze the ones you don’t use.
I am not quite sure what the Tuscan element is in this particular recipe, but the addition of pancetta generally makes everything taste better.
This recipe comes from Bon Appetit and judging from the number of stains on the recipe appears to have been published around 2000.
Tuscan Cranberry Bean and Shrimp Salad
- 1 1/2 cups fresh shelled cranberry beans frozen if desperate
- 2 thyme sprigs
- 1 small rosemary sprig
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped flat-leaf parsley stems reserved
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 garlic cloves one minced and one crushed
- Kosher salt
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 ounces finely chopped pancetta
- 1 pound medium shrimp (wild shrimp are preferred) shelled and deveined
- 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- Freshly ground pepper
- In a medium saucepan, combine the beans with thyme, rosemary, parsley stems, bay leaf, crushed garlic and 1 teaspoon of salt. Cover with water and bring to a boil.
- Reduce the heat to moderate, cover partially and cook until the beans are tender, 15 to 20 minutes (Note: I suggest 30 minutes. They should be firm but cooked).
- Drain the beans and discard the herb stems, bay leaf and garlic clove.
- Heat 3 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large skillet. add the pancetta and cook over moderately high heat, stirring, until lightly browned, about 4 minutes. Add the shrimp and minced garlic and cook, tossing, until the shrimp turn pink, about 2 minutes. Add the lemon juice, season with salt and pepper and cook for 1 minute longer.
- Add the beans and cook, tossing, for 1 minute. Stir in the chopped parsley and the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and transfer to a bowl.
- Serve warm or at room temperature.