My bean intake hasn’t bean (hehe) what it should be lately. I rectified this by making Sunday a bean filled extravaganza and what better way to consume a boat load of the things than to make a spread that you can smother on toast, pitta, crackers or in my case, because it’s all I had, rice cakes. I served them alongside a huge bowl of carrot and butterbean soup, which should cover my bean quota for the day.

This is soooooo incredibly easy but very satisfying. If you are bored of hummus, sick of guacamole then this could be a welcome alternative. Cannellini beans are very mild in flavour and have an exquisitely creamy texture that makes them ideal for dips or spreads. You could make this more dip like by adding more water but I was after a thicker consistency, something that I could heap on top of my virtuous rice cake.

The extra virgin olive oil and oregano added to the vague Italian theme but I couldn’t help but feel that a little truffle oil would’ve helped matters considerably but seeing as I am not currently in possession of all my pantry goodies the evoo had to do. I didn’t excessively salt the spread because I knew I was going to top my rice cakes with gherkins (pickles), which are quite salty in themselves but if you are having this as a stand alone dish I wouldn’t scrimp on the salt or indeed freshly ground pepper.

You could pop the whole lot into a food processor and be done with it but there really is no need as the beans mash very easily with a fork. Don’t be afraid to use the dried oregano liberally, it enhances the dish greatly and the aroma is seriously divine.

And that is that. Cannellini Bean Spread. It’s barely even a recipe!

cannellini bean spread

400g organic cannellini beans

sea salt

freshly ground black pepper

dried oregano

extra virgin olive oil

water

Drain and rinse the cannellini beans. Transfer to a bowl. Mash with the back of a fork. Season with salt and pepper. Give it a further mashing ensuring there are no lumps.

Drizzle over a little extra virgin olive oil – a tablespoon or so – and generously sprinkle in the oregano. Mix thoroughly before altering consistency to your taste with some water.

When adding water do so a little add a time – a teaspoon to err on the side of caution. In total I only added about a tablespoon of water, just enough to loosen the mixture. Taste, season if necessary and add a bit more oregano if you wish.

Transfer to a small bowl, drizzle over a smidge more evoo and a last sprinkling of oregano.

Spread on toast, pitta, crackers or rice cakes. Also delicious in sandwiches or alternatively heat through for an excellent cannellini bean mash, which can accompany a whole host of dishes.

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