I don’t think my point-and-shoot does justice to the glory of these beans. These are runner cannelini beans that I grew from the package I ordered from Steve Sando at Rancho Gordo back last spring when we were all discussing Carlo Petrini’s ill-advised and ill-considered remarks about the Ferry Plaza Farmer’s Market.
I’ve had terrible luck with beans since I moved here. I couldn’t figure it out — who can’t grow a bean for goodness sake? But something kept skeletonizing my beans every spring — and so this year I pulled out a whole bed of hollyhock and sunflower that was close to the vegetable garden. It was kind of a messy bed and so I cleaned it up and put a couple of shrub roses in instead. I love the hollyhocks around here — they grow wild in yards and alleys — but they’re buggy. Flea beetles seem to love the hollyhocks, and so, by cleaning them up, I seem to have solved the bean problem.
These beans grew like gangbusters. I grew scarlet runners, runner cannelini, romas, borlotti, flageolet, and a few others I can’t remember right now. The runner cannelini beans are so beautiful! They’re big, fat, gorgeous white beans. I’ve never seen such big fat beans and once my lamb arrives late this month, I think there’s going to have to be a party involving a leg of lamb and a big dish of gorgeous white cannellini beans with thyme and garlic and olive oil.
The Borlotti are also unbelievable — pod after pod filled with lovely speckled beans. I’ve been shelling beans for days now and last night I made a yummy pot of fresh borlotti beans with sauteed onion and carrot and tomatoes from the garden — it was beautiful and delicious and in my current state of Little House of Food Preservation, I’m just beyond tickled to be drying out my own beans for the winter.