Twelve-Bean Stew with Horseradish Cream
This is the kind of hearty stew I imagine my grandmother making on a cold winter's night back in Russia. While I'm sure she would have used some mighty fine turnips and carrots, I doubt she had access to twelve different types of beans. But many companies make that easy to do with their colorful pre-mixed packages, available in most supermarkets. If you prefer to make your own mixture—a terrific way to use up odd amounts of beans in your pantry—don't feel obliged to use twelve different types. Just be sure to include about 1/3 cup of split peas or lentils, which cook more quickly than other legumes, and then dissolve to thicken the stock. Also, soak 3 tablespoons of pearl barley along with the beans to give the stew added body. (If you're using a purchased bean mix, check the label and add the barley if it doesnt already contain some.)
- 3 cups water
- 1 Tbs. olive oil
- 2 cups thinly sliced leeks or coarsely chopped onions
- 2 tsp. dried dill
- 2 large ribs celery, cut into ½-inch slices
- 1 ½ lbs. purple-topped turnips, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
- 3 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
- 1 ¼ tsp. salt, or to taste
- ½ oz. (½ cup loosely packed) dried porcini mushrooms 2 cups boiling water
- 2 cups packaged twelve-bean mix (or your own mixture plus 3 Tbs. pearl barley) picked over and rinsed, soaked overnight in ample water to cover or speed-soaked
- 1 cup sour cream
- 2 Tbs. red or white prepared horseradish, plus more to taste
1. Drain beans and barley and set aside. Place mushrooms in a bowl and pour boiling water on top. Cover and set aside until mushrooms are soft, about 10 minutes. Remove mushrooms with a slotted spoon and chop any large pieces. Set mushrooms and broth aside.
2. Heat oil in the cooker over medium-high heat. Cook leeks, stirring frequently, until slightly softened, about 3 minutes. Add 3 cups of tap water, chopped mushrooms, dill, celery, and reserved beans and barley. Pour mushroom broth into cooker, taking care to leave any residue in the bottom of the bowl.
3. Lock lid in place. Over high heat bring to high pressure. Lower heat to maintain high pressure and cook for 9 minutes. Quick-release the pressure by placing the cooker under cold running water. Remove lid, tilting it away from you to allow excess steam to escape.
4. Add turnips and carrots. Over high heat, return to high pressure. Lower heat to maintain high pressure and cook for an additional 5 minutes. Quick-release the pressure. Remove lid, tilting it away from you to allow any excess steam to escape.
5. Stir in salt to taste. If the vegetables are not quite tender, cover and cook over medium heat until done. Prepare Horseradish Cream by combining the sour cream and horseradish in a bowl. Add salt, if needed, and additional horseradish to taste.
6. Serve soup in large bowls, with a generous tablespoon of Horseradish Cream in the middle. Pass any remaining Horseradish Cream on the side.