Baião-de-dois is a rice and bean type of pilaf very popular in the Northeastern part of Brazil. The original version is not vegetarian friendly, often being made with lard and other things. It does taste great: fat is flavor. But the old way no longer fits into my lifestyle.
The traditional dish also uses feijão-de-corda, a kind of bean that is similar to black-eyed-peas. Usually the beans get harvested right before they become completely dried. I have yet to see them in North America. These beans stay whole when cooked, so mix well into rice dishes. As a substitute, I used fresh unshelled cranberry beans, which are finally back at the farmers market. The dish is simple, super nutritious and the flavors are incredible.
vegan baião-de-dois or fresh cranberry bean pilaf
1 cup of un-aged basmati rice, rinsed
2 cups cooked fresh cranberry beans, drained
½ green pepper, julienned
½ red pepper, julienned
½ sweet white or Vidalia onion, julienned
4 cloves garlic, crushed
½ bunch cilantro leaves, chopped
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
1 bay leaf
1 tbsp nutritional yeast
Freshly ground black pepper
Crushed red pepper
To prepare fresh cranberry beans, remove from pods then boil in water until tender, about thirty minutes.
Add basmati rice to a saucepan with one tablespoon of olive oil, a bit of salt and a cup and a half of water. Bring to a boil, stirring every now and then to prevent sticking. Turn temperature to low and simmer for about 8 minutes until water is absorbed. Remove from heat but keep covered for another 5 minutes. This will ensure that the rice will be fully cooked and fluffy.
Meanwhile add remaining but 2 tablespoons of olive oil to a skillet. Bring temperature to high. Add onion, peppers, garlic, bay leaf and salt and sauté until onions have become translucent and red pepper has tinted the oil a bit. Discard bay leaf. Add cranberry beans and stir. Adjust salt. Carefully fold in rice, nutritional yeast and cilantro.
Pour onto a serving dish. Drizzle with remaining olive oil. Add several twists of freshly ground black pepper and some crushed dry red pepper. You will be completely nourished by this served as a main dish with a leafy salad to start.