eric carl schwartz

eric carl schwartz

a pretty good stew

a friend asked me to leak the recipe so here i am. as some of you may know, i maintained my rancho gordo bean club subscription for the entire first year i lived in berlin because i spent so long on the waitlist and couldn't imagine losing access to those sweet sweet beans (i have since committed to a life in europe and accepted that schlepping 6-10 lbs of beans per visit home is not tenable).

anyway, the recipe, using some white alubia blanco beans from rg and loosely based on roberto:

  • 300g alubia blanca beans
  • 3 merguez sausages
  • 3 tbsp spice mix
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 tbsp harissa paste
  • 1/2 fennel bub
  • 2 celery ribs
  • 1 medium onion
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • zest of 1/2 lemon
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 6 cups of water
  • 1 tbsp chicken boullion
  • 4 oz can of tomatoes
  • 200g kale
  • 1 tbsp fish sauce
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • salt, to taste


  1. soak beans overnight in enough water to cover + ~ 1 tsp of salt soaked beans
  2. make spice mix (black pepper, cumin, coriander, black cardamom, sesame seed, kashmiri chili powder, turmeric, cinnamon, clove), toasting spices and then grinding in a mortar and pestle ground spices
  3. slice sausage into bite size chunks in a dutch oven and brown in 2 tbsp olive oil. set aside sausage for later
  4. dice aromatics (fennel, onion, celery, garlic) and saute in olive/sausage oil aromatics
  5. sautee tomato and 1 tbsp harissa paste until they darken in color, followed by blooming 2 tbsp spices and lemon zest in oil for 30 seconds
  6. add 6 cups of water, chicken boullion powder, bay leaf, thyme and beans and simmer in a moderate oven for 2-3 hours, until beans are tender cooking
  7. one hour before serving, tear up can of tomatoes and add to the stew
  8. 30 minutes before serving, tear kale into bite size pieces, wash and add to stew
  9. just before serving, make a tadka with 2 tbsp olive oil, 1 tbsp spice mix and 1 tbsp harissa, pour over stew along with 1 tbsp fish sauce and juice of 1/2 lemon
  10. serve with freshly chopped cilantro, lemon wedges and yogurt for germans who can't handle spicy food serving

it was good! had some nice slovenian orange wine with this guy wine