White Beans with Lemon Zest (on Toast)

They don’t have to go on toast, of course, but we had them that way the other day, with asparagus on top. It’s a handy starch when you are Not In The Mood To Dirty Another Pot. Michael, who has suffered through a great deal of Beans on Toast because of his years spent in England, will eat these with relish (the emotional state, not the condiment) but will be happy if he never sees Heinz Beans again.

2 c. white beans, sorted and soaked
2-3 bay leaves
freshly ground pepper

1 clove garlic, minced
zest of one lemon
juice of ½ lemon (or more to taste)
2 T. olive oil
¼ t. cayenne pepper (or more to taste)

In a pressure cooker, place the soaked beans, bay leaves, and a generous amount of freshly ground pepper. Cover and bring to pressure. Cook for 5 minutes, then remove from the heat and set aside. Allow the pressure to drop on its own. When the beans are finished, drain them gently, and reserve about a cup of liquid. Add salt, garlic, lemon zest, lemon juice, olive oil, and cayenne pepper. Once all the seasonings are added, toss the beans gently to combine, adding some of the reserved cooking liquid if necessary to help them mix.

To serve, drape a nice swath of beans over a piece or two of whole-wheat toast. It’ll look nicer if you cut the crusts off beforehand, but I’ll let you decide whether to do that or not.

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