Melt 40g of butter in a shallow pan. As it melts, squeeze in the juice of half a lemon. Chop 2 spring onions and let them soften in the butter over a moderate heat. Drain 320g of bottled artichokes then slice each one in half. Add the artichokes to the butter then drain a can of cannellini beans and tip them into the pan. Leave to quietly bubble over a moderate heat until a sort of impromptu creamy juice has developed. Season with salt, black pepper and a little more lemon.
This is not a recipe where anything should be allowed to brown. Keep the colours pale and the flavours gentle. Rinse the artichokes well of their preserving liquor. Swap the beans for Puy lentils and include some parsley for an earthier style.
Use chives instead of the onion. Tarragon is good here, as it always is with beans, and so is mint. Add mint at the last minute so it doesn't discolour much. This is a 10-minute meal, but you could use your own cooked artichokes if you wish. Prepare and boil them, until tender, then add them, halved, to the melted butter and lemon, as above.
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