Cookbooks: Cool Beans by Joe Yonan

Cool Beans

In my book, Cool Beans (Ten Speed Press) wins the contest for best cookbook title. Not only that, it describes the content of this one perfectly. This is 125 exceedingly cool recipes for bean and adjacent materials. And with just about the whole world on lockdown, Cool Beans just could not be more timely: a whole lot of us have a whole lot of beans in their larder, just waiting to be turned into something edible.

Author Joe Yonan, food editor of the Washington Post, knocks this out of the park. First what to do with all those stacks (or cans) of beans you’ve got sitting there, waiting to be converted into something edible. But this is so much more than the pork and beans of anyone’s childhood.

The Harissa-Roasted Carrot and White Bean Dip is incredibly simple and delivers a surprisingly sophisticated twist on some very easy ingredients and techniques. And I love the idea of the Coconut Cream Bean Pie, even though I haven’t tried it. But on lockdown, right? It’s a good project to delight the kids… with beans.

Big prediction: this one is going to make all of the lists. Interesting, beautiful and vegetarian: it will be one of the best cookbooks of the year. ◊

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