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A Simple Bean Broth Enjoyed Thrice (Yes, I Used This Pretentious Word)

Sometimes you make beans and there's a lot of broth leftover. I have fallen so in love with bean broth that I make sure there's plenty when I make beans. Some beans are better than others but most heirloom varieties produce a wonderful broth that's worth eating on its own. Here at Rancho Gordo, we make beans to sample and my favorite afternoon pick-me-up has gone from another cup of coffee to a delicious shot of bean caldo. This batch, from Eye of the Goat beans, was used "as is" but I did add a teaspoon of tomato paste, just because the tube was out on the counter and it seemed to make sense. I added some previously cooked cactus paddles (you might substitute green beans, if you like) and a very few oven roasted tomatoes before I plopped an egg in for poaching. I don't really know how you can improve something like this. My temptation was to dust it with Parmesan cheese but it really was perfect without it. There was just a little left over and for the next meal I added some leftover chicken. Yesterday I was doing some recipe testing and it included boiling mushrooms for 20 minutes. I made a quick soup from half mushroom water and half bean broth with a little grated ginger and a squeeze of lime. When you have a working kitchen, there's no need for shortcuts.

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