bean pate

bean pate

This is not the most glamourous dish. It is brown, like vegan food of the 1970s, as noted in the brilliant future history mockumentary Carnage by Simon Amstell. However, it is very yummy and nutritious. It’s a favourite of peeps doing work exchange here: a lunch with bread and salads. Here pictured waldorf salad (apples, celery, sultanas, walnuts and a lemon juice thinned down veganaise), grated carrot and beetroot, and tomato, cucumber with bulb fennel and parsley from the kitchen garden. Also goes great with soda bread.

Ingredients serves 6

  • 200g dried pinto or black-eye beans soaked overnight with a piece of kombu if you have it (see tahini chick peas for info on seaweed and pulses)
  • 1 tbsp dried herbes de provence or rosemary and/or thyme
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • good pinch seasalt
  • a few grinds of black pepper


  1. Change the water but keep the kombu and boil the beans for 10 minutes before simmering about 40 minutes til they squixh between your fingers but before becoming mushy mess.
  2. drain the beans into a bowl. Add the other ingredients and blitz with a hand blender. Turn into a bowl and serve. Simple(s).

November 2020 – report from the BMJ found that a daily diet of beans means a longer life

Reviewing 32 existing studies researchers found diets rich in protein are linked to a 6% lower risk of death from any cause (though research has also found that putrefying animal flesh in the gut is the cause of many diseases – my input there!) AND that “a diet containg plant protein was significantly associated with a lower risk of all cause mortality”. Rich sources of plant protein include beans, letnils, chickpeas, edamame beans (soya), muts and quinoa. Tofu is also a good source.

The point is perhaps though not necessarily to lead a long life, but a a good life. Eat good food, plant based and in moderation, but also practice loving kindness to yourself and to others, laugh, have community. A friend of mine memorably said to me that all her family were very long-lived – because they are so selfish.