from dharmagirl's kitchen:
Today I finally cooked a small package of flageolets that my mom purchased for me at Dean and Deluca. Flageolets, according to Mark Bittman, are very young kidney beans. Uncooked, they're pale green, narrow, with only a hint at a kidney shape. They have a light, delicate flavor. I followed Bittman's directions for soaked, quick-cooked beans which worked beautifully. I covered the beans with 2 inches of cold water; boiled for 2 minutes; let stand, covered, off the heat for two hours; then brought to a boil again; and finally, simmered until tender-ish, and only then added salt and pepper. I've recently learned that adding salt to beans too early in the cooking process makes for a tough bean.
Then, I had a giant pot of beans and I wasn't sure what to do. I decided to make a farmer's market soup. I heated olive oil in the bottom of my soup pot, added thin slices of garlic, chopped spring onion, and small rounds of asparagus, which I sauteed briefly. I then added water and brought the mixture to a boil. I threw in a handful of amish egg noodles and set the timer for 8 minutes. When the timer binged, I added a generous ladleful of flageolets, a splash of whole milk, salt, and copious amounts of black pepper. Just before I served the soup I added spinach and a dusting of parmesan. The soup was surprisingly good, and would've only been better with some herbal infusion or a splash of lemon juice, which I easily could've done, but didn't.
I toasted up my last cheddar scallion biscuit, made a simple green salad, and enjoyed my very GREEN, my very Spring soup, and my delicious, slow food meal.
Incidentally, according to the Oxford English Dictionary, a flageolet is also "small wind instrument, having a mouthpiece at one end, six principal holes, and sometimes keys."