Heirloom Beans Sando is Singing My Song

Friends Drift Inn Farm – Real Life

Yellow Beans keep their two-toned markings when cooked in sou[

“Heirloom Beans” by Steve Sando

I take heirloom beans for granted.

Beans are an under the radar kind of food. I like pinto beans ladled up with cornbread or black beans spooned over brown rice. Simple everyday food. But that was before the buzz.

Suddenly the whole world is tweeting about heirloom vegetables, particularly Heirloom Beans.

Who made heirloom beans trendy and cool? If you ask me, it’s The Bean Bard, Steve Sando. Heirloom Beans, his cookbook, is an interesting take on lowly legumes.

Poetry in the Bean Pot

Lots of people sell beans. Sando promotes bean romance. Heirloom beans have beguiling stories and The Bean Bard sings them.

Steve Sando lives and breathes heirloom beans. He travels Mexico seeking out unusual and forgotten bean treasures. He helps farmers produce the crops. He convinces chef’s to showcase heirloom beans. Owner of Rancho Gordo, Sando hawks beans through his >website, a storefront, and at the Ferry Market in California.

The Heirloom Bean cookbook ingredients include:

  • Butter beans
  • Christmas Limas
  • Cranberry beans
  • Cannellini beans
  • Tepary beans, a native of the desert. (Yes you can grow them in Zone 6, I have!)
  • Good Mother Stallard, a variety associated with Glenn Downs at Sandhill Preservation Center
  • Swedish Brown beans
  • Scarlet Runner beans
  • Yellow Eyed Beans and more

What’s Inside?

The first pages of Heirloom Beans are devoted to cooking methods, consumer tips, suggestions for storage, and of course an explanation of heirloom bean varieties. The remainder provides detailed recipes including appetizers, soups, stews and chilis, salads, side dishes, main dishes and casseroles.

It’s a bean palooza!

With a decidedly southwestern flavor, Heirloom Beans is an easy to read, easy to follow cookbook; even if you wear bifocals. But be forewarned, Sando’s recipes are seductive. His Yellow Eyed Senate Bean Soup Recipe makes me swoon!

This book is one of my favorites. Heirloom Beans: Great Recipes for Dips and Spreads, Soups and Stews, Salads and Salsas, and Much More from Rancho Gordo

2016 Update. This heirloom bean article article about Steve Sando and Marcella Hazan touched me. Enjoy!LINK


Links relating to Heirloom Bean Recipes

Senate Bean Soup Recipe    Preserved Lemons
Yellow Eyed Beans Makes Hearty Luncheon Salad
Cooking Heirloom Green Beans

Friends Drift Inn

Cooking Heirloom Green Beans
Beans There and Done That Growing Beans
Jake and the Beanstalk; Greasy Grits Heirloom Beans

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About Joyce Pinson

Joyce Friend Pinson is a regional farm-to-table columnist for the Appalachian-News Express. She is a local television host. Her column show and blog, Friends Drift Inn, explores food, gardening, and real life farm-to-table stories from the perspective of a baby boomer in Appalachia. Joyce has a background in agriculture, media, and small business. Joyce is an heirloom gardening addict and home canner. She has a penchant for big hats, pointy toed shoes, and bourbon. Along with her husband Charlie, Joyce really does live in a barn where they ballroom dance. And laugh. And cook. And giggle.