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How To Make Simmered Greek Style Butter Beans In Fresh Tomato Sauce

Simmered Beans in Fresh Tomato Sauce

Vegetarian main courses are very popular in Greece. Dinner is usually served late, around eight pm, and so around 4 pm consisting of a meze, or appetizer, is served. There are hot and cold Meze. These delicious simmered beans in fresh tomato sauce can be served with crusty peasant bread, spaghetti style pasta, or on top of simmered greens drizzled in olive oil such as Horta Dandelion greens. Don't forget to garnish with some freshly garnished aged cheese or some minced herbs such as flat leaf parsley. Also excellent with some lemon wedges and olive oil for drizzling. This recipe was developed by World Cuisine Today It was inspired by the beans in fresh tomato sauce meze at Papaspiros Restaurant 728 Lake Street Oak Park IL (708) 358-1700

Fresh Fava Beans in Tomato Sauce


One pound of butter beans or Gigantes beans

Four tomatoes grated with their juices

Four large garlic cloves minced

One golden yellow onion

Four tablespoons tomato paste mixed with water or

Four tablespoons of tomato sauce

One tablespoon honey

Two tablespoons fresh greek oregano or two teaspoons dried

Two tablespoons fresh basil or two teaspoons dried

1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom

1/2 teaspoon mild cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon allspice

1/4 teaspoon clove

3/4 cup olive oil

1/2 cup freshly grated aged Greek Kefalograviera, or Parmesan cheese

or 1/2 cup soft crumbled Feta or goat's milk cheese

One cup minced flat leaf parsley

Juice of one lemon

One lemon for wedges


1) Rinse and pick clean the dried butter beans. Pat dry. Next, soak the butter beans in water at room temperature overnight covered in the refrigerator.

2) Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.

3) Drain and rinse the beans once more. Boil the beans in a large soup pot of water with a dash of olive oil for at least 45 minutes until soft.

4) Take two to three tablespoons of the olive oil and place in a large saute pan. Mince the onion. Saute until translucent. Add the minced garlic and a bit more oil and saute for only one minute more. 5) At this point, add the fresh or dried herbs and the tomato paste with water, or tomato sauce. Also add the honey off the heat and stir to thoroughly mix.

6) Add the crushed tomatoes with their juices. And one half cup the minced flat leaf parsley.

7) Add the dried spices: cardamom, cinnamon, allspice, clove, salt, pepper and the 1/2 cup of the olive oil. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Stir gently in the beans so as not to break or bruise the beans. Pour into a greased baking dish.

8) Drizzle the remaning 1/4 cup olive oil over the top and bake for 55 minutes, uncovered.

9) Serve piping hot with the cheese and other half cup of flat leaf parsley drizzled over the top.

10) Serve with crusty peasant bread, or baguette, and pasta or sauteed Horta greens or hearty greens of choice.

Recipe Developed By: Sarah J. Hall World Cuisine Today