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"Roman" beans and "October" beans are just two different names for the Cranberry bean...so yes, they are the same bean.
The Cranberry bean is a medium-sized bean with tan skin, mottled with reddish speckles and streaks. It's flavor is somewhat nutty, earthy, similar to chestnuts. When cooked, this bean has a creamy, smooth texture which makes it an excellent choice for dips and layered mixes.
This bean is a favorite of chefs in northern Spain and Italy, and many local dishes specific to that area of the world employ the cranberry bean in pasta dishes. A great choice for its nutritional value, this combination is an interesting and palatable break from more familiar marinara-only, marinara meat sauce combinations, or pastas with cream sauce.
1 cup of cooked Cranberry beans contain:
241 total calories
16.5 grams of protein
.8 grams of fat
43.3 grams of carbohydrate
17 grams of fiber
88 mg of calcium
3.7 mg of iron
685 mg of potassium
The dried beans should be soaked for several hours or overnight to soften, or speed soaked by boiling for one hour. Drain the soaking water and cook for 45 to 60 minutes until tender.
These are a healthy addition to the diet, so enjoy!
Roman Shell Beans Recipe
by Deena Montillo, Montillo Italian Foods
1 pound fresh Roman shell beans, shells removed
1-1/2 teaspoons salt, plus extra
3 tablespoons classic olive oil
In a saucepan over medium-high heat, add 5 cups of water, and salt. Bring to a boil. Add the shelled beans, and lower the heat to medium. Add more water to cover the beans if necessary. Simmer for about 35 minutes.
To test for doneness, lift a few beans from the water using a spoon, and blow on them. When done, the outer skins will split open. When chewed they will be smooth textured, not crunchy.
When the beans are done, drain and return them to the saucepan. Drizzle with olive oil, toss, and season with salt to taste. Transfer to a serving bowl. Serve hot. SERVES 4-6