GIANT BEANS IN THE OVEN WITH ONIONS
For us Greeks, legumes and especially beans are one of our key nutritional elements that provide valuable antioxidants, vitamins and nutrients essential for health. Beans are the national food of Greeks that have been grown for generations, especially in times when people were not able to buy meat.
Giant beans have the advantage of making a variety of rich filling recipes as they combine with many winter and summer ingredients.
Plain or roasted with soufflé, with sausages or pork, in salads with spices, prepared with tomato and rosemary, in the oven with bacon, peppers, mustard and herbs, with sausage and orange, there are a wide variety of ways in which to eat giant beans.
I’ve loved giant beans since I was a kid. I don't know if the word "giant" impressed me the most, either from fairy tales, movies on television or from grandmother’s stories.
Legumes are a food category that should not be missing from children's nutrition. Beans provide the same nutrients as meat, but their consumption is declining. I have said it again and again that we need to get our kids involved in cooking to create character for the food. The fact that I loved the kitchen is the reason why I love cooking and learning the secrets of good food.
And now that I'm working and the kids need looking after because they are young, I find the opportunity to cook together with them. You will tell me that cooking is fun for you. However, this is not always the case in our busy lives. It's a matter of time management and understanding what it means for the family to have a hot meal on the table daily. Enjoying hot fresh food means a quality life!
And because it is a matter of quality of life and nutrition, I will try to make my favorite giant beans with the secrets of my mum's kitchen and with my own touch to make it even more delicious.
Let's go try it!
500g of giant beans
3 large onions
2 large ripe tomatoes
1 clove of garlic
A little celery
100ml olive oil
2 tbsp grape syrup
½ tablespoon tomato paste
2 hot peppers (optional)
½ teaspoon cumin
Salt & pepper
From the previous night, soak the giant beans in plenty of water with ½ teaspoon of soda. The next day rinse very well and boil in a pot for about 1 hour. Add a little water whenever needed.
Cut the onions into rings and fry with a little olive oil, add the grape syrup to caramelize. Add the grated tomato, tomato paste, garlic, sliced carrot, herbs and spices. Allow the sauce to cook for 10 minutes over medium heat.
Strain the giant beans, keeping a cup of their broth for later in the recipe. Empty the giant beans into a baking tray or casserole dish, lightly salt and pour in the sauce.
Add the olive oil and the cup of broth. (If the baking tray you’re using doesn’t have a lid, cover the food with greaseproof paper and aluminum foil) Close the casserole and bake for 40 minutes at 200 degrees. After half an hour, take off the lid and allow the food to brown for 10 minutes.