Thread & Whisk started our Monday doing laundry. Watching the spin cycle at the crack of dawn while wired on caffeine leaves plenty of room for the creative mind to wander and get goofy. Part of our tagline is... finding grace in everyday tasks. Today, we found silliness. In Louisiana and many parts of the south, Monday was historically "wash day." Rough way to start each week, unless you add a little music. In the spirit of wash day, the Cajun way, we started humming along to the Dixie Cups singing "Iko Iko All Day." Humming turned to singing. Soon, dancing followed.
Monday is also the day that red beans and rice were traditionally served in the South. One (let's say it was the lady of the house) could tend to laundry duties while a slow-cooking pot of red beans practically took care of itself on the stove. So while folding and sorting, and thinking about food, we ladies (eh hmm) created the recipe for Thread & Whisk's version of Monday red beans and rice.
You might be thinking that it's kind of weird that we were doing laundry together at our studio. It's not our family laundry. That's still sitting in a pile somewhere. We were busy pre-laundering some of our beautifully designed linens, created right here in Portland by Thread & Whisk. Stay tuned. In the weeks to come, we will finally have something to share on our Shop page.
Click here if you could use a dose of silly to get you through your Monday. Cook this if you want to fill your belly with something gratifying tonight.
scarlet runner beans and brown rice
Our twist on tradition in this recipe was to use heirloom scarlet runner beans instead of plain ol' red beans. Mixed with sautéed vegetables and spicy andouille sausage atop brown rice, it's a reward at the end of a Monday, whether your laundry is in a neat, folded stack or still sitting in a pile.
1/2 pound dried scarlet runner beans, soaked overnight*
2 bay leaves
1 tsp dried thyme, divided
1 tsp dried oregano, divided
1-1/2 cups brown rice
1/4 cup olive oil
1 cup diced celery
1 cup diced onion
1 orange bell pepper, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/4-1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp paprika
1 tsp salt, plus more to taste
pepper to taste
1/2 pound andouille (or other spicy) sausage, sliced
1 bunch scallions, sliced
Put the drained beans in a stock pot and cover with 6 cups cold water. Add bay leaves, and half of the thyme and oregano. Gently simmer, partially covered, for about an hour or until the beans are tender. Add 1 tsp salt after 45 minutes and start checking for doneness of beans.
Begin cooking your rice in a medium pot according to your preferred method. Keep it warmed after it is done cooking.
Heat the oil in a large sauté pan and add the vegetables, garlic and remaining thyme and oregano. Cook over medium heat until the vegetables are nicely browned, about 15 minutes. Add the spices and season with salt and pepper. Add vegetable mixture to finished beans and then simmer for 5 more minutes to infuse the flavors.
In the same large sauté pan, brown the andouille sausage over medium high heat. Add the scallions to the pan at the end or use them as garnish over the finished dish.
Serve beans, over rice. Top with andouille.
*If you didn’t soak the beans, you are not alone. Try this quick soak method: Place beans in a pot and cover with water by three inches. Bring to a boil and simmer briskly for two minutes. Remove from heat, cover, and let stand for one hour. Drain. Proceed as if you soaked them overnight.