Black-eyed beans (feijao frade ) are extremely popular in Portugal.They are much quicker to cook than ordinary beans and their characteristic flavour makes them suitable to be the bit on the side to hot dishes, or as the stalwart partner in a faithful salad.Forming a relationship with canned fish such as sardines and particularly canned tuna can be the perfect first date for these little frade.To bring out their unique flavour black-eyed beans must always be seriously laced with some oil and a little vinegar,grated or finely sliced raw onion,(preferably red) and a good sprinkling of parsley.I decided to take all these ingredients to another level, add some personal touches and make a condiment as a part of a dippy tapas type starter.What I did not know was that what I was about to create was going to bear an uncanny resemblance in taste and texture to hummus, but I have to say with many more levels of flavour.So a Portuguese take on a middle eastern classic you might say, or as I would call it a new take Baba Gha-mush.No tahini was a plus for me and the tomato content gave it a warm, coral-like colour,which was enticing and gave it a hummurus twist.I can just see Nigella waltzing into the kitchen in a slinky black robe for one of her apparent 'naughty midnight snacks'.I have a strong fantasy image of her getting some flat bread, laying it out in front of her, slathering it and placing a couple of handfuls of hot chips on top. Sprinkling it with coarse salt, a squeeze of lemon, and then squeezing it into a bundle and cramming face. At this point I wake up with a fright and realise the job in hand was writing a blog post about accidental Portuguese hummus,not fantasizing about Nigella´s jugs.So let´s just get on with it shall we?
400g can of Feijao frade ( black-eyed beans)
2 garlic cloves
1 small red oniongenerous handful of flat leaf parsley
1 tablespoon chilli coriander jam or similarcoriander leaves and stalks
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
Juice of ½ a lemon
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Place the solid ingredients in the food processor, followed by the chilli coriander jam, lemon juice, red wine vinegar and olive oil. Whizz until it resembles a coarse yet homogeneous paste.
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