"People: Beans and rice are a meal! Protein and starch. It's surprisingly comforting, universal, filling, and healthy." —Rach
This article originally appeared in our Holiday 2021 issue. Get the magazine here.
For the beans, in a large lidded deep skillet or Dutch oven, heat the EVOO, two turns of the pan, over medium. Add the onion and season, stirring for a few minutes to soften. Add the garlic, sweet and smoked paprika, oregano, sugar, cinnamon, and bay leaf and stir for 1 minute. Add the stock and tomatoes. Bring to a simmer. Cook, partially covered, until mixture thickens slightly, 10 to 12 minutes. Stir in the beans and reduce heat to low. Simmer, partially covered, until thickened to stew consistency, 5 to 7 minutes.
Meanwhile, for the pilaf, toast the pine nuts in a small skillet over medium heat, stirring, until golden brown, about 3 minutes. Cool. Melt butter in a large deep-sided skillet over medium heat. Stir in the orzo until deeply golden, 3 to 4 minutes. Add rice; stir for 1 minute. Add 2 1/2 cups of water, the garlic, and salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer, covered, until water is absorbed, 15 minutes. Remove from heat. Let stand, covered, for 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork. Stir in pine nuts.
Serve pilaf in a shallow bowl with beans. Sprinkle feta, dill, and parsley on top.