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Rushin' Russian Red Beans

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“I first came across the idea of red kidney beans in damson sauce in Rose Elliot's "The Bean Book". I've since discovered that Rose's recipe is based on a Russian dish called Lobio. I've made a few tweaks to Rose's recipe, including making it more 'instant' by using canned kidney beans. Traditionally you're supposed to serve this dish cold, but we can rarely manage to wait that long (I did say "rushin") so I serve it hot as a main dish, over baked potatoes; usually with salad and coleslaw. If you can wait, this is lovely served cold as intended. I use my own home made jam in this recipe (Damson Jam Damson Jam) but if you can't find damson jam, plum jam can be substituted (warning: plum jam is sweeter so I suggest starting off with a smaller amount and adding to taste). Serves 2 as a main dish, 4 as a side dish.”

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Put the jam, vinegar, garlic, basil and coriander in a saucepan; cook gently over a low heat until the jam has melted.
  2. Empty the contents of the can (including the water) into the damson sauce mixture and bring to the boil.
  3. Cook on a low to medium heat for about 5-8 minutes until the liquid has reduced to a good saucey consistency (not too runny, not too thick!): season with a pinch of salt and good grind of black pepper.
  4. Serve hot or cold: your choice.

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