Braised Greens and Cannellini Bean Panini

This creamy spread of cannellini beans cooked with onion, garlic and white wine is a perfect match for tender braised greens. Press the two together between pieces of flatbread or crusty whole grain bread for a delicious vegan Panini.


Braised Green Ingredients:

1 ½ pounds (about two bunches) hearty greens such as kale or collards

3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil or coconut oil (which I prefer)

2 large leeks, white & light green parts only, sliced ¼ inch thick

¼ tsp salt

¼ tsp crushed red pepper

1 cup vegetable broth


White Bean Spread Ingredients:

2 tbsp. Extra-virgin olive oil or coconut oil (my preference)

3 spring onion bulbs or shallots, thinly sliced

2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

½ cup dry white wine

1 ½ cups cooked cannellini beans (or one 398 ml. can, rinsed)

1/8 tsp salt

1/8 tsp freshly ground pepper


Sandwich size flatbreads or slices of whole grain bread


Braised Greens Directions:


1. Strip leaves from stalks and wash. Stack and slice leaves into 1-inch strips. Thinly slice stems into ¼-inch pieces. Keep leaves and stems separate.


2. Heat oil in large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add leeks and chopped stems and cook, stirring, until softened, 4 to 5 minutes.


3. Stir in ¼ tsp each of salt, pepper and crushed red pepper. Add sliced greens and broth. Reduce heat to low, cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until greens are very tender, 20 to 25 minutes. Uncover. If there’s any liquid left, continue cooking for another minute or two until it is nearly gone.


Bean Spread Directions:


1. Meanwhile, heat two tbsp oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add sliced onions/shallots and garlic, and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 2 to 3 minutes.


2. Add wine and cook until most of it evaporates, about 3 to 6 minutes.


3. Stir in beans and 1/8 tsp. each of salt and pepper; cook until heated through, about 1 to 2 minutes.


4. Puree the bean mixture in a food processor until almost smooth (remember to use caution when pureeing hot food!)

Panini Preparation:


1. Coat one side of each flatbread or bread slice with oil. For each sandwich, start with bottom slice oil side down, top with equal portions of bean spread and braised greens. Top with remaining piece of flatbread or bread, oiled side up.


2. Press in a Panini maker until hot and crispy, or cook in a frying pan, one side at a time, while pressing down on the sandwich with a flipper.


Recipe makes six sandwiches


Tip: You can prepare braised greens and bean spread ahead; cover and refrigerate each in separate containers for up to three days.