Fusilli Bucati with Escarole and Black Eyed Peas

Recipe contributed by Ramin Ganeshram; photo by Tami Ganeles Weiser Yield:  4 servings
Prep Time:  15 minutes Cook Time:  50 minutes

Fusilli Bucati with Escarole and Black Eyed Peas

This recipe features a number of good luck foods from various cultures. Black-eyed peas are a New Year’s Day soul food staple, as are the greens. Long noodles represent longevity in both Chinese and ancient Persian traditions, and during the Asian Lunar New Year, shiitake mushrooms represent opportunity to be seized. A number of ancient cultures believed that garlic was both a powerful protection against evil forces, as well as a giver of strength and stamina. Garlic is also represented on the ceremonial table of the Zoroastrian New Year that holds seven good-luck items for the coming year.

Ingredients

½ cup dried black-eyed peas or 1 cup canned black-eyed peas

1 tablespoon good-quality olive oil

2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

8 shiitake mushrooms, trimmed and sliced

½ bunch escarole, washed and roughly chopped

½ cup vegetable stock (see Notes from the Test Kitchen)

¼ teaspoon salt, or more to taste

½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or more to taste

½ pound fusilli bucati or other long wheat noodle of your choice

½ teaspoon cornstarch dissolved in 1 teaspoon cold water

 

Instructions

  1. If you are using dried black-eyed peas, soak them  in 1½ cups of water overnight. Drain. Bring 2 cups water to a boil and add the beans. Simmer until the beans are fork tender, about 40 minutes. Drain and set aside. If you are using canned beans, rinse the beans in a colander or sieve and set aside.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a large fry pan over medium heat. Add the garlic and sauté, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the mushrooms and sauté for 1 minute. Then add the escarole and mix well. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cover the pan. Cook the escarole until it just wilts, 1 to 2 minutes.
  3. Add the vegetable stock, salt, and pepper, cover, and cook for 10 minutes.
  4. While the escarole is cooking, make the pasta according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
  5. Add the cornstarch mixture to the escarole, increase the heat to medium-high and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer until sauce thickens and easily coats the back of a spoon, about 1 minute. Remove from the heat.
  6. Place the pasta in a large serving bowl and add the sauce. Toss well and serve hot.

Kitchen Tips

Notes from the Test Kitchen

If you’d like to make your own stock, try the Weiser Kitchen’s Roasted Vegetable Stock.

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