We’ve got another great slate of pantry essentials for you this month. Many coordinate a bit with our Italian theme, but all stand on their own, as well! Plus, some Lithuanian chocolate (with mushrooms!) to finish things off.
Here's what's in the box:
* King City Pink Beans (Rancho Gordo)
* Corona Beans (Casina Rossa)
* Guinea Flint Grits (Geechie Boy Mill/Marsh Hen Mill)
* Riso al Montepulciano (Fior di Maiella)
* Rigatoni (Pastificio Boulder)
* Porcini Dark Milk Chocolate (Naive)
For the beans (both Corona and King City Pink), you can check out my "How to Cook: Beans" post.
For the grits, check out "How to Cook: Grits."
King City Pink Beans (Rancho Gordo)
These pink beans are dense, but with a thin skin, and produce a wonderful broth. They’ve recently been brought back/reintroduced by Rancho Gordo – they put King City, CA on the map in the 1930’s, got a mention in a Steinbeck novel, peaked after WWII, and then mostly disappeared. Until now! These are perfect for pot beans or baked bean preparations.
Corona Beans (Casina Rossa)
This heirloom Italian bean is a staple of Abruzzo. It’s a very meaty bean, perfect for pasta e fagioli, and excellent in a stew preparation.
Guinea Flint Grits (Geechie Boy Mill/Marsh Hen Mill)
This bright yellow heirloom corn (pictured on the front of this card!) makes for some delicious grits – and, given our Italian theme this month, they can make a great polenta, too. Just serve under a hearty stew, and you won’t go wrong.
Riso al Montepulciano (Fior di Maiella)
Mirko Dicrecenzo of Fior di Maiella has infused short grain Italian baldo rice with local Abruzzese Montepulciano Red Wine, rich in red wine antioxidants. Makes a lovely side dish for seared duck breast, steak and venison. Serve with radicchio or roasted squash as a vegetarian entrée.
Rigatoni (Pastificio Boulder)
Pastificio Boulder is a new company based in (you guessed it!) Boulder, CO, making delicious, bronze-die cut, slow-dried pastas from freshly milled heritage wheats. Their specific flour blend changes seasonally based on growing schedules, but they feature wheats like White Sonora, Turkey Red, and Blue Emmer). You probably don’t need me to tell you what to do with a box of rigatoni.
Porcini Dark Chocolate (Naive)
Naïve makes fascinating and delicious chocolates in Lithuania, and this one is no different! They collect wild foraged porcini mushrooms and combine them with beautiful chocolate for a real treat.