Farinata con cavolo nero

During such a cold winter it’s all but natural to turn to earthy, warm comfort food.
This typical rustic Farinata (or porridge) is made with two key winter ingredients- polenta and black kale. It’s pure peasant food- thicker than a soup, it’s a full meal on its own. The new olive oil will give it the perfect finishing touch!

200 g of black kale (called also lancinato kale)
150 g polenta (cornmeal)
200 g cannellini beans (or kidney beans)- cooked
1 liter of the water you cooked the beans into (or 1 liter of hot water or even better vegetable broth)
4 tbsp of EVO plus some as finishing touch
1 onion- thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic- peeled
chili pepper- to taste
3 sage leaves
1 carrot- chopped
1 celery stalk- chopped
chopped peeled tomatoes or pureed tomato (passata) – 1 cup
salt and pepper- to taste

- Wash and chop the kale after removing the central stem.
- Puree the beans in a mixer or pass them through a sieve (sifter).
- In a large pan heat 4 tbsp of EVO, add the onion, carrot, celery, garlic and sage leaves and cook at low heat for 10 minutes or so, until softened.
- Add the chopped kale,  tomato sauce and chili pepper with a pinch of salt, cover the pot and let it simmer for 15 minutes stirring occasionally  (or until kale is withered).
- Add pureed beans and 400 ml of the cooking liquid (or hot water or broth), stir and simmer for 15 minutes.
- Add the remaining reserved cooking liquid, season with salt and pepper and slowly sprinkle in the polenta stirring constantly for 40 minutes (or follow the cooking time directions for polenta if you get the “quick cooking” one). If the consistency of the Farinata is too thick, add hot water during cooking- it should have the consistency of a bean soup.

Serve hot adding the remaining EVO and a little black pepper.
It pairs well with Chianti, Morellino di Scansano or Rosso di Montalcino.