Cajun-Basque Red Beans
Ingredients
Directions
Ingredients
1 lb
dried red beans
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1
large onion, unpeeled, ends cut off
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1
leek, white and green parts only
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1
carrot, peeled
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1
head of garlic, unpeeled, top cut off
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1
bay leaf
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3
sprigs of thyme
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2
dried chiles, stems and seeds removed
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1
small head green cabbage, cut in half through the stem
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2 oz
tasso
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2 lb
pork ribs, in one piece (baby back is ideal)
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kosher salt
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1-2
boudin links
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1-2
smoked pork sausage links
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¼ c
extra-virgin olive oil
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6
cloves garlic, sliced very thin
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jar of small, thin pickled green peppers (like pepperoncini)
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Cooked long-grain rice, for serving
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Cajun-Basque Red Beans

Adapted from The Basque Book by Alexandra Raij, Eder Montero and Rebecca Flint Marx

In this recipe, you want dried chiles that aren’t too hot. Guajillos or New Mexican chiles would be ideal. If you want to un-Louisiana the dish, you could substitute prosciutto for the tasso and chorizo and/or blood sausage for the boudin and smoked pork sausage. I think you get the idea—there are lots of ways to play with this recipe.

6-8 servings

  1. In a large stockpot, combine the beans, onion, leek, carrot, garlic, bay leaf, thyme, dried chiles, half the cabbage, tasso, ribs, and a couple tablespoons salt. Cover with about 6 inches of water and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook for about an hour and a half. Add the boudin and smoked sausage and cook for 20 minutes. Remove the ribs, boudin, and smoked sausage and let cool. Then cut the ribs, boudin, and sausages into 6 to 8 pieces each.
  2. Continue cooking the beans until they’re tender. This could take another hour and a half or so.
  3. Meanwhile, bring a medium saucepan of salted water to a boil. Cut the remaining cabbage into thin strips and boil until the strips are tender, about 6 minutes. Drain well and transfer to a plate.
  4. When the beans are tender, remove the garlic, cabbage, tasso, leek, thyme sprigs, bay leaf, and any large chile pieces. Remove the onion and carrot, peel the onion and add the peeled onion and carrot to a blender. Add about a cup of the beans and bean broth to the blender and blend until smooth. Return the pureed beans to the pot. Cook for another 10 minutes to allow the puree to meld with the other beans. Taste and season with salt.
  5. In a small saucepan, add the oil and garlic and warm over medium-low heat until the garlic turns just golden. Add half the garlic and oil to the beans and pour the rest over the cabbage.
  6. Serve the beans with the reserved meat, pickled peppers, and cabbage. You can reheat the meat in a 300℉ oven for 10 minutes or so. Serve with rice.

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