l I’m going through a period where I want to be one flaneur† After all the stress of 2020 (and 2021 and, well, now), this seems like a good way to go, and it affects my cooking because I like to skew my effort-to-reward ratio in favor of reward – hence this broth-like , tomato-ey beans that practically self-cook. If you’re feeling particularly lazy, just eat them as they are (preferably in the garden with a baguette and cold wine) or, to spice things up a bit, crack open some jars of artichokes and take out the flatbreads and hummus , for a picky… chunky, meze-like meal.
Harissa butter beans of tomato and roses
Some harissa spice blends, like Bart’s, have salt as the main ingredient, while others use little to no salt, so you’ll need to match the spices to the brand you’re using. Always measure your rose water into a container, rather than pouring it straight from the bottle into the pan to avoid accidental overflow – there’s no turning back.
Preparation 10 minutes
Cook 25 minutes
7 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
6 cloves of garlicpeeled and crushed
1 fresh red pepperfinely sliced
500 g large ripe vine tomatoesgrated (compost the skin)
1 tbsp harissa spice mix – I like Bart’s
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
Little ¼ tsp rose water – I love Nielssen Massey
1 tbsp sun-dried tomato paste
2 cans of 400 g butter beansnot tapped
Fine sea salttaste
15 g fresh dill
2 tbsp lemon juice (ie from 1 lemon)
Place four tablespoons of oil in a medium saucepan over medium to high heat and, once hot, add the crushed garlic and cook for a minute or two, until the pungent smell disappears (but before the garlic turns more than pale gold).
Add the chilli, cook for a few more minutes, then add the grated tomatoes, harissa spice mix, vinegar, rose water and sun-dried tomato paste and let it bubble vigorously for eight to ten minutes, until the tomatoes are reduced and the mixture is quite paste-like .
Add the butter beans and liquid from the cans, mix and cook for 10 minutes until the beans are warm and soft. Add the salt by quarter teaspoons, until the mix is just right for you (I used a teaspoon, you may need more).
While the beans are cooking, finely chop the dill and place in a small bowl with the lemon juice, the remaining three tablespoons of oil and a quarter teaspoon of salt.
Arrange the beans on a serving platter, spoon over the lemon and dill oil and serve.