It’s Tasty Tidbits Tuesday! You know I love to cook on the weekend, especially at the shore because the kitchen is bigger although the stove is smaller as is the oven. The real reason I love cooking in New Jersey is the accessibility to several marvelous grocery stores and two magnificent fruit and vegetable stands. Believe they don’t call New Jersey the Garden State for nothing! Unabashedly, Wegman’s is my favorite grocery store and I love making the recipes in their seasonal MENU magazine. This recipe for Tuscan Baked Beans is in the latest edition. I don’t know if it was meant to be a main dish but it certainly would satisfy a vegetarian or vegan.
1 pkg dry Great Northern Beans OR 4 cans of Great Northern Beans undrained.
9 cups of water* (only needed it you use the dry beans)
24 leaves of fresh sage OR 20 if you are NOT using dry beans
2 sprigs of fresh rosemary, OR 1 if you are NOT using dry beans
1/2 cup of Extra Virgin olive oil, divided
1 1/2 pkgs of chopped onions. (12 oz)
4 cloves of garlic, finely diced
8 plum tomatoes, chopped
1 TBS salt
1 tsp pepper
1/4 cup basting oil (olive oil with Italian herbs in it)
2 cups of Panko bread crumbs
You’ll need a stockpot* and a braising pan
** indicates usage with the dry beans
*Place sorted and rinsed beans in stockpot. Cover with about 2 inches of water, tilt cover to vent and soak 8 hours or overnight. Drain the beans. Put the beans and 9 cups of fresh water in the stockpot. Heat on HIGH uncovered, until boiling. Skim off as much foam as possible. Add 4 leaves and 1 sprig of rosemary to the pot. Reduce to MEDIUM. Cover, tilting to allow steam to vent. Cook one hour, do not stir.
Heat 1/4 cup olive oil in braising pan on MEDIUM. Add onions and garlic, cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. Chop 20 sage leaves and sprig of rosemary, add to onion mixture. Cook 1 minute.
Add tomatoes, salt and pepper. Simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat.
Check beans for tenderness. If not quite tender, cover completely and cook an additional 15 minutes.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Add beans and liquid to the onion mixture in braising pan. Stir to combine. Drizzle remaining olive oil and bake for 60 minutes. Beans will be done when liquid is syrupy and bubbly. Carefully remove from oven, season with salt and pepper.
Mix basting oil and panko crumbs in small bowl. Place mixture over beans and return to oven, bake 20-30 minutes until topping is brown and crisp.
This makes enough beans to feed 8 people. It tastes great, REALLY!!
Recipe from Wegman’s MENU magazine