Serves four to six
- 2 tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/2 cup thinly sliced shallots
- 2 1/2 tsp. fresh rosemary, thyme and savory (if you have it), minced
- Pinch of dried lavender
- 4 cups cooked, drained white beans, such as cannellini, navy, baby white limas or flageolets
- 1/3 cup water
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tsp. fresh lemon juice (optional)
Combine extra-virgin olive oil and shallots in a large (12-inch) heavy skillet. Cook, covered, over moderate heat, until the shallots are soft and golden, about five minutes. Stir in fresh thyme and rosemary (and savory, if you have it) and a pinch of dried lavender. Sauté, stirring, for one minute. Add beans and water to the pan. Bring to a simmer, reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook, stirring frequently, until the liquid has almost evaporated, about five minutes. Adjust the seasoning, including a teaspoon of fresh lemon juice if necessary to brighten the flavors; pepper generously. Spoon the beans into four shallow soup bowls. Drizzle extra-virgin olive oil over each serving.
Recipe excerpted from The Improvisational Cook by Sally Schneider (William Morrow, 2006).