Jose Pizarro’s Recipe for Black Beans with Pork Shank and Cabbage | Spanish food and drink

I I love British winters, being outside on cool, breezy days, and also getting steamy at indoor parties. Although people say January is the darkest, darkest month, we have incredible winter produce, like iron-rich leeks and sweet leeks, all begging to be part of warming soups and stews. Another winter essential, dried beans are delicious and affordable, so I always have some in the store cupboard, ready to go.

Black beans with pork and cabbage

The region around Tolosa in the Basque Country is known for its beans, which are purple to black in color and tend to be firm with a creamy, nutty texture. If you can’t find them, use dried black beans, turtle beans, or kidney beans instead.

This dish is traditionally made with chorizo, morcilla and pork belly, but this is a simplified version of the original. It features only a small amount of meat, and plenty of wonderful winter vegetables, with just a hint of chili for its lovely warmth.

soak Overnight
to equip 10 minutes
cook 1 hour 30 minutes
serves 4

400g dried Tolosa black beansor any other dried black beans
3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oilplus more to finish
2 medium onionsPeeled and cut into thin slices
1 large shallottrimmed and cut into thin slices
1 fresh bay leaf
A few sprigs each of fresh thyme and oregano
2 cloves of garlic
Peeled and cut into thin slices
1 tablespoon of La Vera paprika
1 pinch of chili flakes
250 ml white wine
500 ml chicken broth
Salt and black pepper
200g motor
olo nero or curly kaleThe thick stems are removed and discarded or saved for stock, and the leaves are shredded
180 grams of shredded pork
2 teaspoons sherry or Moscatel vinegar

Soak the beans in cold water overnight. The next day, drain the beans, toss them in a pan and add enough cold water to cover them by about an inch. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 1 hour, until beans are tender.

Meanwhile, put the oil in a large skillet or casserole dish over medium heat, and lightly sauté the onions and shallots, stirring, for about 10 minutes, until softened. Add the herbs, garlic and spices and sauté, stirring, for a few more minutes, then pour in the wine, raise the heat and let it reduce by half.

Drain the beans, reserving 2 ladlefuls of the cooking water, and add to the onion pan. Add the broth, season generously, and simmer, uncovered, for 20 to 30 minutes, until the beans are very tender and the juices have reduced and thickened.

Add the nero cavullo, cover the pot and cook for four to five minutes, until wilted. Add the pork shank and vinegar, just to heat up, then pour into bowls and serve with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil, a scattering of chili flakes and a good grind of black pepper.

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