Nourish - Butter Beans with Baked Tomatoes, Garlic and Courgettes
Butter beans, as their name suggests, have a rich creamy texture and taste which can be used in all manner of stews, curries, salads and pates.
Cooked from scratch (or tinned) they are very satisfying as a main meal or side dish, plus they are packed with vitamins, minerals, complex carbohydrates, protein and digestion helping fiber.
Before we hit the main recipe, I’ll quickly show you how to cook dried butter beans, should you choose to cook them from scratch.
How to Cook Dried Butter Beans
- To cook dried butter beans, first, they need to be soaked overnight or for about 12 hours in cold water.
- When they’re ready, refresh the water and boil in a pan with a bay leaf and/or a strip of kombu which assists in the digestion of most dried beans.
- Cooking time can vary according to the quality or age of the beans but generally, they take at least an hour simmering on a medium to low heat.
- Test them towards the end of cooking and remove from the heat before they start to break up.
Method for Main Dish
- Begin by cooking your butter beans, fetching your previously cooked ones out of the fridge or grabbing a can out of the cupboard. Set aside.
- Preheat oven to 200c fan.
- Line a large, flat baking sheet with baking parchment or oil the base of the baking sheet.
- Cut the tomatoes (if large) and courgettes into even-sized pieces and arrange in a baking dish with the garlic cloves.
- Sprinkle with dried oregano and vegetable/olive oil before baking in a moderate oven for 30 to 40 minutes. Here’s an option to drizzle in some balsamic oil along with the oil, or add this to your dish after cooking.
- Combine the baked vegetables (including their sweet juices) with the butter beans and garnish liberally with herbs, rocket and freshly ground black pepper. Serve warm or cold
Tomatoes are best known for their vitamin content which includes beta-carotene, vitamins C, E, some B vitamins and vitamin K. They also contain a handful of minerals including calcium and magnesium and are loaded with antioxidants.
Rocket greens are brilliant for digestion because the bitterness within their leaves stimulates enzyme production and therefore bile flow, ultimately helping and promoting digestion.