Fagioli all'Uccelletto

Submitted by John on Sun, 06/07/2020 - 16:03
Fagioli all'Uccelletto

Here is a nice, easy summer dish to go with grilled meats. It's essentially just beans with sage. 

The name means "beans like little birds" and nobody is really sure where the little birds come in, except that the seasonings are typical of those used in poultry dishes. 

You can optionally add tomatoes, but I like these with just the delicate flavors presented here along with some grilled meat or maybe a strong-flavored fish like swordfish or salmon.

You can use canned beans, but you get better flavor if you use the dried beans and refresh them yourself, as described here. 

4 Servings
Preparation time
1 hour
  1. Drain the beans and then boil them with the bit of onion, rosemary and one of the sage sprigs, and one of the garlic cloves, until tender.
  2. Saute the whole sage and the other garlic clove long enough to flavor the oil and then either discard them or not depending on how you want the final dish to look.
  3. Drain the beans and rinse them, then add them to the pan with a little of the water.
  4. Add salt and pepper if you like, and simmer until the water evaporates.
  5. Stir it all together and put into a bowl to cool.
  6. When it is no longer hot, stir in that last special spoonful of your best olive oil (see the notes) and transfer to a pretty serving dish.
There's olive oil and there's olive oil. You can get single-farm and single-variety olive oils with their own unique characteristics - some are more peppery, some herby, some mild and others pungent - and each pairs better with some things than with others. This is one of those dishes where you can experiment. I get my special top-shelf extra-virgin olive oil from Olioveto (https://olioveto.com/). It's expensive, but you only use it a spoonful at a time and it makes such a difference!
Classic Food of Northern Italy