What you will need: Vegetable cooking spray ½ C. chopped onion 2-15 oz tins red kidney beans (drained) ½ C. chopped celery ½ lb smoked turkey sausage (sliced thick) ½ C. chopped green pepper ¼ tsp ground red pepper 2 Cloves garlic (minced) 1 tsp Worcestershire 1-8 oz tin tomato sauce ¼ tsp hot sauce These easy steps: Coat a 5-quart Dutch oven with cooking spray and place over medium high heat. Add onion, celery, green pepper, and garlic. Cook 3 minutes stirring often. Add drained beans, sausage, ground pepper, Worcestershire, and hot sauce to the skillet mixture. Stir, reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes. I like this served with plain steamed rice and crusty bread. You can also top this off with finely diced Bermuda onion to give it a fresh snap with each bite. About the main ingredient: Just as its name suggests, the kidney bean is shaped like a kidney. Since these dark red beans hold their shape during cooking and readily absorb surrounding flavours, they are a favorite bean to use in simmered dishes. White kidney beans are known as cannellini beans. Kidney beans are a very good source of cholesterol lowering fiber, as are most beans. In addition to lowering cholesterol, the high fiber content prevents blood sugar levels from rising too rapidly after a meal, making them an especially good choice for individuals with diabetes, insulin resistance, or hypoglycemia. When combined with whole grains such as rice, kidney beans provide virtually fat-free high quality protein. Pairing: Pondview Estate Gewürztraminer/Riesling 2009, VQA at $13.95 is described as “off dry” with nice balancing acidity. Its finish is quite refreshing and ideal when served with spiced food dishes. Situated in Niagara, Pond View Estate Winery is family owned and operated by Luciano and Adriana Puglisi. Though the winery itself is new, the family has been growing grapes here since the 1970s. Hints and tips: For many people, cooking is the number of minutes food gets heated in the microwave. Others judge themselves so harshly in the kitchen that they feel paralyzed and refuse to try something different. Take a deep breath. You’re in your kitchen. You have some lovely fresh food with which to make a tasty meal. Whether you’re following a recipe or your instincts, take your critical judge’s hat off. Use your senses to explore and prepare your meal. You were extra conscious in buying everything that you did. It’s colorful and visually appealing. Don’t stop now. Take a deep breath. You’re in your kitchen. Enjoy! Damon G. Beggs firstname.lastname@example.org Damon is owner of CATERWAITER Event Catering & Service Staff located in downtown Toronto.