Cannellini with kale, fennel and yellow peppers

Penne with chard, fennel and yellow peppers

Penne with chard, fennel and yellow peppers

    All great deeds and all great thoughts have a ridiculous beginning. Great works are often born on a street corner or in a restaurant’s revolving door.
    Albert Camus
    At any street corner the feeling of absurdity can strike any man in the face.
    Albert Camus
    Don’t you stay at home of evenings? Don’t you love a cushioned seat in a corner, by the fireside, with your slippers on your feet?
    Oliver Wendell Holmes
    If you leave the smallest corner of your head vacant for a moment, other people’s opinions will rush in from all quarters.
    George Bernard Shaw

Maybe success is just around the corner. Maybe you’re sick of being stuck in a corner. Maybe you like being stuck in a corner, because your little corner of the world is your favorite place. Maybe you’re standing on the corner like just-got-in-town-Jasper, and you’re deciding which way to turn next. Maybe you’ll stop in at the corner shop for directions and gossip. Maybe you’re just standing on the corner, watching the world go by. Whether the corner is the center of all the action or a dusty forgotten place, today’s Sunday interactive playlist is songs about corners. Add your song to the list, or leave a comment and I’ll try to remember to add it through the week.

This is a quick meal! But it has lots of flavor and good textures. Anise-y fennel, earthy beans and kale, sweet peppers and raisins, tart goat cheese. The boys ate it with penne, but I ate it with arugula and pecans, as you see in the picture.

Here’s a link to the playlist.

Penne, or any pasta shape you like, cooked as you like it.
1 small bunch kale, cleaned, stems removed

2 T butter
2 t fresh lemon thyme
3 or 4 sage leaves, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 fennel bulb, cleaned, trimmed and diced quite fine
2 t golden raisins, chopped
1/2 cup white wine
1 can cannellini beans, or any other size of white beans you like
1 yellow or red pepper, trimmed and diced
1 tomato, roughly chopped
salt, pepper, and juice of one lemon
crumbled goat cheese

Bring a large pot of salted water to boil and drop the kale in. Let it cook for a few minutes, till it’s tender but bright, and with a slotted spoon remove it to a strainer. Run cool water over, squeeze out the water, chop quite finely and set aside. Add the pasta to the boiling water and cook as long as you like.

In a large skillet over medium heat, melt the butter. When it’s bubbling, add the herbs and garlic. Cook for about a minute, then add the fennel. When it starts to soften and brown, add the raisins, and then the wine. Cook for a few minutes until the wine is reduced and syrupy. Add the beans and pepper, stir and cook to coat, and then add about 1/2 cup of water and the tomato. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer until the fennel is as soft as you like it, fifteen to twenty minutes. Add more water as needed to make it as saucy as you like it.

Season with salt, pepper, and lemon juice, and toss with pasta. Crumble goat cheese on top, if you like.

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