Friday, July 3, 2009

Tray Chic

I just love saying "I have a meeting with my PUBLISHER" with an affected Jacqueline Suzanneque flourish. This week I had one at the Viva Editions office with the lovely and talented Brenda Knight and her new intern, Corinna.

And, because the Frugal Foodie wants to maintain her rep, I always try to bring a little snickety snack with me to a meeting. For this meeting, I brought Rosemary Flatbread and White Bean Spread with Chopped Green Olives - simple, cheap, easy and yummy!

I knew we'd nibble while we met, but that there would likely be leftovers I wanted to leave behind at the office for the folks to snack on the rest of the afternoon. So I needed to devise a frugal, attractive, disposable way to transport and serve the treats.

The solution...

I sliced off the bottom 2" or so of a small shipping box, then lined the box with some of the packing paper that it came with. One recipe of Flatbread fit perfectly, and I used a recycled hummus container to hold the White Bean Spread.

Looks good enough to eat, no?

White Bean Spread

2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 large white onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced
1/2 pound dry white beans, cannellini or Great Northern
1 tablespoon fresh or 1-1/2 teaspoons dried oregano + additional for garnish
4 cups vegetable broth
1/2 pound good-quality green olives, pitted and chopped
Salt to taste

Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large stockpot. Add the onion and garlic and sauté until translucent. Add the beans, broth, and oregano and turn up the heat to medium-high. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium. Cover the pot and simmer until the beans are tender, about 2-3 hours. Check the pot every so often, adding more broth or water if needed the so the beans are always covered.

Drain the beans in a colander, reserving the liquid. Puree the beans in a food processor, adding reserved liquid if need to create a spreadable consistency.

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