BM# 73: Week 3/ Day 1
Theme: Ingredient through Mail
Dish: Mediterranean Style Baked Lima Beans
I have a very interesting theme for this week's blogging marathon. Valli paired the BM bloggers and asked us to send ingredients to each other. But the NJ/ NY bloggers had an even better idea, four of us met in person and swapped the ingredients. So I got 2 ingredients from Mir (the Schizo Chef) and 1 from Usha (my Spicy Kitchen).I am starting the week with these dried Lima beans that I got from Usha. I love all kinds of beans and when I saw these, I wanted to give them a try. I haven't tried lima beans before, so I thought this would give me a chance to finally try them.I found a recipe for this Mediterannean Baked lima beans recipe in Veganomicon cookbook. Lima beans expand quite a bit after soaking and cooking. They get chewy on the outside and creamy on the inside. The Mediterranean flavors in this dish make it quite tasty. The tangy tomato sauce makes it delightfully delicious. This is a spin off of a traditional Greek style dish and is great to serve alongside rice, potatoes and steamed greens. It can also be served with pita, hummus and olives, as part of a meze spread.
This goes for the February: Week 3, Cooking from Cookbook Challenge Group.
Mediterranean Style Baked Lima Beans
- 1 cup Dried Lima beans
- 1 Bay leaf
- 1 Vegetable bouillon cube
- 2~3 tbsp olive oil
- 2~3 Garlic cloves, finely minced
- 1 Small Onion, finely chopped
- 1 Small Carrot, shredded
- 1 15.5oz. Can of diced or crushed tomatoes
- 1 tsp red wine vinegar
- 1 tbsp tomato paste
- 1~2 tsp Pure Maple Syrup or Agave nectar
- 2 tsp Dried Oregano
- 1 tsp Dried Thyme
- Pinch of nutmeg
- To taste Salt Pepper
- 3 tbsp Fresh Parsley, chopped
- 3 tbsp Fresh Mint, finely chopped
- Soak the lima beans for at least 8 hours. Drain and rinse the beans, place them in a large pot with cold water and bay leaf. Cover and bring to a boil, then lower the heat to medium heat. Simmer the beans for 30 minutes or until the beans are tender but not fully cooked through. Skim off any foam that collects while cooking.
- Drain the beans, reserving 1 cup of the cooking water and the bay leaf, and set aside. Dissolve the bouillon cube in the reserved 1 cup of hot bean liquid, set aside.
- Preheat the oven to 375°F. Lightly grease a dutch oven or a baking dish or a casserole pan.
- Heat olive oil in a pan or the dutch oven (if using), add the garlic and onion and cook till the onion turns translucent, about 3~4 minutes.
- Add the carrot and cook for 1~2 minutes. Next add the tomatoes, reserved bean water, red wine vinegar, tomato paste, maple syrup, oregano, thyme, salt, pepper and nutmeg. Stir and bring the mixture to a boil, then lower the heat and cook for 10~12 minutes, to thicken the sauce.
- Check the seasoning and add more salt and pepper, if needed. Add the beans, parsley and mint.
- Transfer the beans to the baking dish (if using the dutch oven, just transfer it to the oven), cover the pan with foil, and bake the beans, stirring occasionally, for 30~40 minutes, or until the beans are tender and the interior of the beans is creamy.
- Remove the foil and bake for another 10~15 minutes, to thicken the sauce a little and the beans are slightly dry.
- Remove from the oven, remove the bay leaf, and allow to cool for 10 minutes before serving.